RJD chief Lalu Prasad Yadav has been convicted in the fouth fodder scam (Dumka Treasury) case by Ranchi court on Monday. Former Bihar CM Jagannath Mishra pronounced not guilty in the case. The quantum of punishment will be announced on Friday.
Besides Lalu, another Bihar former chief minister Jagannath Mishra and 30 others are accused in this case. The hearing of this particular case, relating to fraudulent withdrawals of Rs 3.13 crore from December 1995 to January 1996 from the Dumka treasury, was completed on March 5.
The fodder scam has cost Lalu Prasad Yadav his political career. Because of his three convictions so far in this case, he had to step down from the post of Bihar Chief Minister in 1997, lose his Lok Sabha seat and was also barred from contesting elections for six years following the sentencing due to an earlier Supreme Court order.
Lalu has so far been convicted in three fodder scam cases out of a total of six in which he has been facing trial.
Lalu's convictions in other fodder scam cases till date:
Lalu Yadav was first convicted in a fodder scam case in 2013 and was awarded five years' imprisonment.
On January 24, a special CBI court awarded five years in jail and a fine of Rs 10 lakh to Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) chief Lalu Prasad Yadav in a third fodder scam case. Special CBI court judge S S Prasad had earlier convicted Lalu and 50 other accused in the case, which pertains to fraudulent withdrawal of Rs 33.67 crore from Chaibasa treasury in 1992-1993. Former Bihar CM Jagannath Mishra was also found guilty and awarded a five-year jail term for embezzling funds from the Chaibasa treasury.
Lalu, who is currently lodged jail, was on December 23, 2017, convicted for 3.5 years in the second fodder scam case. Although he was convicted on December 23, the quantum sentence was pronounced on 6th January 2018.
So, according to judgements pronounced till date, the total jail term for the RJD chief amounts to 13.5 years.
Altogether 61 cases were filed by the CBI in the scam, 53 of which were transferred from Bihar to Jharkhand after the bifurcation of the state in November 2000. The case is regarding large-scale embezzlement of government funds, made by producing fake bills to substantiate payments that were never made.
The scam took its notorious name from the fact that it was rooted in the Animal and Husbandry department of Bihar government and the fraudulent transactions were made in the name of procuring cattle feed over a period of 20 years, under successive regimes. It first came to light in 1985 by the then CAG TN Chaturvedi, who noticed that monthly accounts submission from Bihar treasury were always delayed.