A special CBI court today sentenced RJD supremo Lalu Prasad Yadav to three-and-a-half years in jail and imposed a fine of Rs 10 lakh on him in a fodder scam case.
The punishment was handed down to 69-year-old leader by CBI court Judge Shiv Pal Singh. This is the second time that he has been jailed in the fodder scam.
The case pertains to fraudulent withdrawal of Rs 89.27 lakh from the Deoghar Treasury 21 years ago.
Lalu, who was the Chief Minister of the undivided Bihar from 1990 to 1997, was sentenced to three-and-a-half years in jail for offences of cheating, along with criminal conspiracy and other sections under the Indian Penal Code (IPC). He was also given a jail term of three years and six months in the case under the Prevention of Corruption Act (PCA).
The RJD leader was fined Rs 5 lakh each under the IPC and the PCA, CBI counsel Rakesh Prasad said, adding that failure to pay the fine would entail another six months in jail.
The sentences will run concurrently, he informed.
Prasad, who was convicted in the second case on December 23, is at present lodged in the Birsa Munda Central Jail. The judge conveyed the punishment to Prasad through video-conferencing.
The court had yesterday concluded arguments on the quantum of sentence against Prasad in connection with the withdrawal of Rs 89.27 lakh from the Deoghar Treasury between 1990 and 1994 when he was the chief minister of Bihar. It had also heard arguments on the issue of punishment for 10 others convicted in the case. Earlier today, the court concluded arguments on the quantum of sentence against five other convicts.
Prasad was given a prison term of five years on September 30, 2013, in another fodder scam case. He was released on bail by the Supreme Court after having remained in jail for over two-and-a-half months.
The CBI special judge had on December 23 acquitted former Bihar chief minister Jagannath Mishra and five others in the case.
In 1996, the Patna High Court had ordered an inquiry into the fodder scam cases and a charge sheet in the Deogarh Treasury case was filed against 38 people on October 27, 1997. Eleven of them died and three turned approvers, while two other accused confessed and were convicted in 2006-07, a CBI official said.
On September 30, 2013, Yadav, Jagannath Mishra and several others were convicted in another case pertaining to illegal withdrawal of Rs 37.7 crore from the Chaibasa Treasury in the early 1990s.
Prasad faces another three fodder scam cases for illegal withdrawal of Rs 3.97 crore from the Dumka Treasury, Rs 36 crore from the Chaibasa Treasury and Rs 184 crore from the Doranda Treasury.
Meanwhile, Prasad's son Tejashwi Yadav said in Patna that they will move high court against his father's conviction. "We will move High Court against Lalu Prasad's conviction and appeal for bail after studying the court verdict," he said.