ED Issues Fresh Summons To Bihar Deputy CM Tejashwi Yadav In Land For Job Scam Case

Yadav has been instructed to appear on January 5, after having skipped a prior summons scheduled for December 22.

Bihar Deputy Chief Minister Tejashwi Yadav

The Enforcement Directorate has issued a renewed summons to Tejashwi Yadav, the Deputy Chief Minister of Bihar and RJD leader, in connection to the railway land-for-jobs scam case.

According to PTI, Yadav has been instructed to appear on January 5, after having skipped a prior summons scheduled for December 22. The 34-year-old had dismissed the ED notice as a routine matter so far, according to the probe agency.

In the same case, Tejashwi Yadav's father and Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) chief, Lalu Prasad Yadav, has been summoned to depose on December 27 at the ED headquarters in Delhi. The alleged scam pertains to the period when Prasad served as the railway minister in the UPA-1 government.

Tejashwi Yadav, addressing reporters on December 21 in Patna, stated, "There is nothing new in the summons. All these agencies -- ED, CBI, and I-T department -- have summoned me so many times in the past, and I have duly appeared every time. But now it seems to have become routine."

He had previously been questioned by the ED in this case on April 11.

The summons follow the questioning of an alleged "close associate" of the Lalu Prasad family, Amit Katyal, who was arrested by the ED in November.

The alleged scam involves the appointment of several individuals to Group "D" positions in various Indian Railways zones between 2004 and 2009. They were purportedly appointed in exchange for transferring land to the family members of Prasad and a linked company named A K Infosystems Private Limited.

The ED claimed that Katyal, the director of the company, acquired land from candidates "on behalf" of Lalu Prasad. The agency alleged that several lands were acquired in return for undue favors by Lalu Prasad when he was the minister of railways. After acquiring the land, shares of the company were "transferred" to the family members of Lalu Prasad in 2014.

The ED case, filed under the criminal sections of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), originated from a complaint lodged by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI). In October, Prasad, his wife Rabri Devi, and Tejashwi Yadav were granted bail by a trial court after the CBI filed a chargesheet against them in this case.

The RJD is part of the INDIA bloc of parties joining forces to contest the BJP in the general elections of 2024. According to the CBI, residents of Patna were allegedly appointed without the issuance of any advertisement or public notice.

In return, the candidates, either directly or through their immediate family members, purportedly sold land to Prasad's family members at highly discounted rates. Over the past few months, the ED has recorded statements from Rabri Devi, Misa Bharti, Chanda Yadav, and Ragini Yadav in this case.