Ranchi: Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) leader Lalu Prasad Yadav has been sentenced to five years in prison in the Doranda treasury case related to the fodder scam. He also has to pay a fee of Rs 60 lakh, the court pronounced on Monday, February 21. A special Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) court pronounced the quantum of sentence for those convicted in the case last week.
Last week, a special CBI court had held former Bihar Chief Minister Lalu Prasad Yadav guilty in the Doranda treasury case related to the fodder scam. The case pertains to illegal withdrawal of Rs 139.35 crore from Doranda treasury in Jharkhand.
The fodder scam refers to illegal withdrawals worth Rs 950 crore from various government treasuries for fictitious expenditure on fodder and other requirements for cattle during Lalu Prasad Yadav’s term as Bihar chief minister.
Of the 99 accused in the Doranda treasury case, 24 were acquitted while three-year jail terms were pronounced for 46 accused last week itself.
Lalu Prasad Yadav, 73, was earlier sentenced to 14 years in jail in four other cases related to Dumka, Deoghar and Chaibasa treasuries in Jharkhand. He was out on bail in those cases until Tuesday when he was sent back to jail after being convicted in the Doranda treasury case. Later, he was shifted to a hospital on account of poor health.
The sixth case in which RJD chief Lalu Prasad Yadav is an accused relates to withdrawals from Banka treasury in Bihar; it is still under trial.
What is the fodder scam?
The fodder scam came to light in January 1996 after a raid at the Animal Husbandry Department. The CBI named Prasad as an accused in June 1997. The agency framed charges against Prasad and former Bihar chief minister Jagannath Mishra. In September 2013, the trial court convicted Prasad, Mishra and 45 others in one of the cases related to the fodder scam and Prasad was imprisoned in Ranchi jail. In December 2013, Supreme Court granted bail to Prasad in the case while in December 2017, the CBI court found him and 15 others guilty and sent them to Birsa Munda prison.