The powerful former chief minister of the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu, Jayalalithaa Jayaram, on Monday was cleared of corruption charges on appeal, paving the way for a possible return to office.
Ms. Jayaram, 67, who served as chief minister until her conviction in September, had been accused of illegally accumulating about $10 million through shell companies during her first term in the 1990s, when she stated she earned a single rupee per month. After 18 years of court proceedings, she was sentenced in 2014 to four years in prison.
On Monday, the Karnataka High Court reversed a lower court’s conviction, which at the time had been hailed as a blow to political corruption. A search of Ms. Jayaram’s home after the case was filed turned up a gold belt studded with 2,389 diamonds, among other jewels.
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