Congress leader Babla sent to 1.5 years jail in Shed allotment case

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Devinder Babla was earlier pronounced guilty in year 2014 by the court of judicial magistrate, but was released on probation of good conduct. The order however was challenged by the state.

The Hush Post: Congress councilor and leader of opposition in Chandigarh Municipal Corporation, Devinder Singh Babla was on Tuesday sentenced to 1.5 years imprisonment in the nine-year-old shed allotment scam. The court of Additional District and Sessions Judge Ashwani Kumar Mehta also imposed a fine of Rs 35,000 on Babla. He was arrested and sent to Burail Jail.

Devinder Babla was earlier pronounced guilty in year 2014 by the court of judicial magistrate, but was released on probation of good conduct. The order however was challenged by the state.

On March 27, the local court held him guilty in a cheating case pertaining to allotment of sheds at the Sector-26 grain market. Babla was held guilty under Sections 420 ( cheating) and 468 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC). The case dates back to 2009. The quantum of sentence was to be pronounced on April 2, but Babla couldn’t be produced before the court in view of security arrangements put in place for the SC/ST protests.

It is learnt the Babla had broken down in the court during the last hearing. Babla had sought leniency stating that he had to take care of his 84-year-old father who suffered from heart ailments and had to marry off his daughter.

Suraj Prakash Ahuja, a shopkeeper at Sector-26 Grain Market had filed a complaint against Babla with the Vigilance department in 2009. Babla was accused of accommodating 10 ineligible persons during the auction in July that year, even as there were 59 licensees. The matter had come into light after a shed, which had fallen, had to be reallocated.

In August 2009, Chandigarh Police had registered a case of cheating and forgery against Babla, who was the then chairman of the market committee, and Rakesh, president of the Arhtiya Association of the Sector-26 grain market, for irregularities in the allotment.

Babla surrendered on December 28, 2009, after a local court issued orders asking him to appear before it or be declared a proclaimed offender.

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