Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa. [Representational Image]Reuters

The Karnataka High Court on Monday acquitted former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa in the ₹66 crore disproportionate assets case.

#JayaVerdict Out: Karnataka HC Acquits Jayalalithaa; Tamil Nadu Celebrates Amma's Victory

The relief came after Justice CR Kumaraswamy passed the judgement in favour of the AIADMK chief in the 19-year-old case. The judicial outcome swings the political fortunes for the chief of ruling party as Tamil Nadu is going to have assembly polls in about a year.

The AIADMK supremo had filed a petition challenging her conviction in the illegal assets case and the four-year jail term she was awarded by a special Bengaluru court in September 2014.

Jayalalithaa's lawyer B Kumar said she was acquitted as the the case against her could not be proved.

2:52 pm: Speaking in her acquittal on Monday, Jayalalithaa said her victory is not personal but for the people and truth, according to news report.

1:44 pm: Tamil Nadu Chief Minister O Panneerselvan may resign on Monday evening.

12:02 pm: Tamil Nadu Chief Minister O Panneerselvam and his ministers arrive at Jayalalithaa's residence in Chennai to greet her.

11:32 am: "Case against Jayalalithaa couldn't be proved so she has been let off: B Kumar, Jayalalithaa's lawyer" – ANI.

11:02 am: Karnataka High Court Justice Kumaraswamy acquits Jayalalithaa.

10:41 am:  Lawyers are protesting outside Karnataka High Court in Bengaluru (earlier Bangalore) ahead of verdict on Jayalalithaa's plea against conviction and jail term.

The supporters of Jayalalithaa are offering special prayers hoping the verdict is in her favour. Moreover, several of her supporters have gathered outside her residence in Chennai, where Jayalalithaa is herself waiting for the landmark judgement.

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Karnataka HC Justice Kumaraswamy, who heard AIADMK supremo's appeal against the conviction, will pronounce the much awaited judgement at 11 am on 11 May. Kumaraswamy had reserved his judgement on her plea on 11 March.

The three of her associates who too had challenged the judgement are VK Sasikala, VN Sudhakaran and J Ilavarasi.

[JayaVerdict in Photos: Karnataka High Court to Decide Jayalalithaa's Fate]

The date was presumably chosen after the Supreme Court set a 12 May deadline for the Karnataka High Court to deliver its verdict while extending Jayalalithaa's bail, which she had secured after spending 21 days in Bengaluru's Parappana Agrahara Central Jail.

A special court in Bengaluru (Bangalore) had on 27 September, 2014 sentenced Jayalalithaa to four years in jail and imposed a fine of ₹100 crore in the 19-year-old disproportionate assets case. She was released on bail on 18 October after which she filed a petition challenging her conviction.

Security in view of verdict

In view of the law and order problem witnessed in the Karnataka capital and all across the neighbouring Tamil Nadu soon after Jayalalithaa's conviction, the Bengaluru (Bangalore) police have already issued prohibitory orders surrounding the HC, so that the security is ensured when the result is declared.

As part of precautionary measures, city police commissioner MN Reddi has imposed prohibitory orders under Section 144 of the CrPC in Bengaluru (Bangalore) on Monday. The section prevents any gathering in and around the high court, within the radius of one kilometre, PTI reports.

The prohibitory orders will be imposed from 6am to 9pm as Jayalalithaa's supporters awaiting the verdict in Tamil Nadu are expected to flood the IT capital on 11 May.

Last year, when the Karnataka HC had pronounced its judgement against Jayalalithaa, people in Tamil Nadu had carried out massive protests across the state. While several died of shock, many reportedly committed suicide over her jail term.

Bengaluru (Bangalore) too witnessed protests and law and order issues in the wake of the verdict, in view of which, the city police have taken precautionary measures to contain the situation which might get bad if the high court verdict goes against Jayalalithaa. 

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