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Fodder scam: day of reckoning for Lalu

23 December, 2017 7:22 AM
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Special court to pronounce the judgement in second fodder case today

A special CBI court in Ranchi will on Saturday pronounce the judgment in a fodder scam case in which Rashtriya Janata Dal chief Lalu Prasad is an accused.

Mr. Prasad and his party are hoping for a verdict as in the one on the 2G case in which all the accused have been acquitted. Mr. Prasad, along with his younger son and Leader of the Opposition Tejashwi Yadav, reached Ranchi on Friday to a warm welcome by hundreds of party workers.

“I do hope that I will get justice as in the 2G spectrum case … I have full faith in the judiciary but whatever verdict will come, I will abide by it,” Mr. Prasad told presspersons.

“It is the BJP, the RSS and Nitish Kumar who are behind all this … they want me to be sent to jail so that they will have no political opponent, but they don’t know that every worker of the RJD is a Lalu Yadav,” he said.

The case pertains to the alleged fraudulent withdrawal of ₹84.5 lakh from the Deoghar district (now in Jharkhand) treasury between 1994 and 1996 when Mr. Prasad was the Chief Minister. Of the six fodder scam cases registered against Mr. Prasad, this will be the second in which verdict is pronounced.

On September 30, 2013, he was held guilty in the first. The five-year prison sentence he got disqualified him from Parliament and he was banned from contesting elections. However, the Supreme Court granted him bail in December that year.

Special judge Shivpal Singh will pronounce the verdict in the case in which 11 of the 34 accused have died during the trial. Two accused had turned approvers and two pleaded guilty.

In 2014, the Jharkhand High Court stayed trial against Mr. Prasad in four pending fodder scam cases on the ground that a person convicted in one case could not be tried in similar cases based on same witnesses and evidence, but the Supreme Court quashed the High Court order in May this year.

Source: thehindu.com

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