Solar scam | Saritha S. Nair sentenced to 6 years’ RI

Guilty of duping business into paying ₹42.70 lakh

The Kozhikode Judicial First Class Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday sentenced Saritha S. Nair to six-year rigorous imprisonment (RI) and slapped a fine of ₹40,000 in connection with a solar cheating case.

Pronouncing the verdict, magistrate K.K. Nimmi found Saritha, second accused, guilty of duping Abdul Majeed, owner of Associated Steels Yard, into paying ₹42.70 lakh after promising him franchises in solar panel and windmill farm companies in 2012.

Assistant public prosecutor Geoffrey George Joseph said the court would separately pronounce the verdict on Biju Radhakrishnan, first accused, as he had sought exemption from hearing the verdict following his quarantine. A third accused, B. Manimon, was acquitted.

Deputy Superintendent of Police Jaison K. Abraham probed the case and submitted the chargesheet against them in December 2013.

The case

The prosecution case is that Saritha approached the victim as Lakshmi Nair, zonal manager of the company, while Biju introduced himself as K.B. Nair or Biju Nair. Saritha and Biju were running a firm called Team Solar Renewable Energy Solutions on Chittoor Road in Kochi.

Saritha was found guilty under Sections 406 (criminal breach of trust), 419 (punishment for cheating by personation), 420 (cheating and dishonestly inducing delivery of property) and 471 (using as genuine a forged document) of the Indian Penal Code ( IPC).

She was awarded one-year RI and fined ₹10,000 each in Sections 406, 471 and 419 and three-year RI and ₹10,000 in Section 420. The sentences would run consecutively.

The court had to adjourn the verdict after Saritha failed to turn up. In February, the court issued an arrest warrant against Saritha and others for not showing up in court to hear the verdict in the case.

Last week the Kasaba police arrested Saritha from her house in Thiruvananthapuram. She was also remanded in judicial custody in Kozhikode. She now would be shifted to the prison in Kannur.

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