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Rajat Gupta case holds important lessons for Indian judicial system

The speed with which former McKinsey & Company Managing Director Rajat Gupta was tried, found guilty, and sentenced in an insider trading case, once again highlights the shortcomings of the Indian judicial system.

E. Kumar Sharma        Last Updated: October 26, 2012  | 10:44 IST

E. Kumar Sharma
E. Kumar Sharma
The speed with which former McKinsey & Company Managing Director Rajat Gupta was tried, found guilty, and sentenced in an insider trading case, once again highlights the shortcomings of the Indian judicial system.

I lost my reputation, says apologetic Rajat Gupta

Gupta's trial began on May 21, 2012 . On June 15, less than a month later, a jury found him guilty of conspiracy and three counts of insider trading. On October 24, he was sentenced to a 24-month jail term and fined $5 million.

Gupta's case holds many important lessons for India 's judicial authorities.

Take the case of Satyam Computer founder B. Ramalinga Raju for instance. He remains an undertrial in a case involving alleged fraud committed while he was the chairman of the company, now known as Mahindra Satyam.

In a letter to the company's board of directors on January 7, 2009, Raju had even admitted that there was wrongdoing at Satyam. He was arrested a couple of days later by the Andhra Pradesh CID.

FULL COVERAGE: Rajat Gupta trial

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) took up the matter in February 2009 and has so far filed three chargesheets against 10 accused. All of them have served about 18 months in prison as undertrials.

There are also matters related to the issue pending before several other authorities, such as the Securities and Exchange Board of India, Enforcement Directorate and other bodies.

The case is being heard in the 21st additional chief metropolitan magistrate at Nampally in Hyderabad.

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Interestingly, this is a case where hearings have been taking place regularly. Neither side has sought an adjournment. Thus far, the prosecution has presented its evidence. The defence is now presenting its case. This will be followed by arguments and finally the judgment.

If Rajat Gupta were facing trial in India , his case, too, would likely have dragged on for years. In a statement, Gupta said that the last 18 months were the most challenging period of his life

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