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Convicted in graft case, Tongchongya out on bail

Aizawl: Former Chief Executive Member (CEM) of the Chakma Autonomous District Council (CADC) Kali Kumar Tongchangya, who was sentenced to four years and a fine of Rs 4 lakh in corruption case last month, was released on bail on Monday.

A release by Chakma district Mizo National Front’s media cell said that the decision to release Tongchongya on bail came after an appeal filed by his legal team before Justice Nelson Sailo, of Aizawl bench Gauhati High Court. 

The hearing took place on October 6 where A.M Bora, a learned senior counsel, assisted by Bipul Bhagawati, presented the case for the appellant. The application sought the suspension of the execution of the sentence and orders issued on September 25 and 26  respectively.

Bora strongly argued that Kali Kumar Tongchangya had no previous criminal convictions and had been on bail throughout the trial. The counsel referred to paragraph 10 of the impugned the September 26 order, arguing that the trial court itself acknowledged the absence of evidence indicating the misappropriation of funds for personal gain by the appellant.

Considering the submissions made by the learned senior counsel and in adherence to Section 389 of the CrPC and its proviso, Justice Nelson Sailo decided to suspend the impugned judgment & order of conviction and the order of sentence. This suspension will remain in effect until the final disposal of the connected criminal appeal.

Tongchangya was convicted by the Special Court (Prevention of Corruption Act) in Aizawl on September 26 for swindling Rs 1.79 crore of fund meant for road construction under Non-Lapsable Central Pool of Resources (NLCPR) and using the money for the Congress party election campaign in 2013 CADC elections.

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