Former Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalithaa on Thursday moved the Supreme Court for bail on medical grounds saying her health condition did not permit her to remain in jail for long.
The Karnataka high court had on October 7 declined bail to AIADMK supremo who is facing a four-year jail term in a corruption case. She has sought an urgent hearing before the SC and her bail plea is likely to be mentioned on Friday.
Sources said a battery of senior advocates including Harish Salve and KK Venugopal may appear for her before the top court. Her counsel before the HC, senior lawyer Ram Jethmalani would continue to represent her.
Jayalalithaa (66) is in jail for 12 days. She had said as chief minister she did not misuse her powers in this case. The former CM also cited grounds of being senior citizen and a woman for getting out of jail.
She has sought bail on grounds of parity too, citing the SC order granting bail to former Bihar chief minister Lalu Prasad.
Furthermore, Jayalalitha said she cannot be kept in jail indefinitely as her appeal proceedings in the HC would take a long time.
She denied misusing her powers as the Chief Minister and found fault with the trial court conviction order saying it had ignored the true facts of the case. Besides punishment, she was also slapped a fine of Rs 100 crore on the AIADMK chief and Rs 10 crore fine each on the three other accused.
Jayalalitha was convicted of using the first of her three terms as Tamil Nadu CM to accumulate wealth. Her arrest had provoked AIADMK supporters who went into mass mourning and resorted to violent street demonstrations.
Her successor, TN CM O Panneerselvam urged the people to maintain calm. “The best way to show your love for Jayalalithaa is to stay calm,” said Panneerselvam.
The HC sentence forced Jayalalitha to step down as chief minister. This in due to a landmark SC ruling that ousts convicted law-makers from office.