Monday, Sep 26, 2022

Lalu Prasad Yadav Given Jail Term In Fodder Scam: A Timeline Of Events

The Rs 950-crore scam relates to the fraudulent withdrawal of public funds from government treasuries in various districts of undivided Bihar.

Lalu Prasad Yadav
Lalu Prasad Yadav PTI

The Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) supremo and former Bihar chief minister Lalu Prasad Yadav has been sentenced to jail for five years in the Fodder scam case. The verdict comes a week after a special CBI court had convicted him in the fifth fodder scam. The court also imposed a fine of Rs 60 Lakh on him. 

Yadav was convicted along with 74 others in the Rs 139.5 crore Doranda treasury embezzlement case. The court on January 29 had completed hearing arguments in the case and reserved its verdict. Prasad had earlier been sentenced to 14 years in jail in four other fodder scam cases.

The Rs 950-crore scam relates to the fraudulent withdrawal of public funds from government treasuries in various districts of undivided Bihar.

The case is related to the fraudulent withdrawal of money from the treasury in 1995-1996. It has been nearly two decades since the scam,  involving politicians and bureaucrats of successive administrations, has been unfolded. 

Timeline of the scam:

The scam first came to light in January 1996 following raids carried out by Deputy Commissioner Amit Khare in the offices of the Animal Husbandry Department during which documents were recovered that showed shipowning of funds by non-existent companies in the supply chain. 

In March 1996, the Patna Court directed the Central Bureau of Agency (CBI) to probe the case following which the matter was passed to the Supreme Court. The CBI then registered an FIR in the Chaibasa Treasury case.

In June, the following year, the CBI in its charge sheet named Lalu Prasad Yadav and 55 others, following which Yadav surrendered before the agency and was sent to judicial custody.

Yadav’s bail plea was rejected in April 2000.

In Februrary 2000, Ranchi’s special CBI court started hearing the matter after the scam case was transferred to the then newly-formed state of Jharkhand. 

Prasad was acquitted of charges in the case in December 2006.

Again in March 2012, charges were framed against Lalu Prasad Yadav for fraudulently withdrawing Rs 47 lakhs from the treasuries at Banka and Bhagalpur districts between 1995 and 1996, when he was the Chief Minister of Bihar.

The Supreme Court rejected Prasad's plea seeking the transfer of the trial court judge hearing the case in August 2013.

Prasad was convicted along with 45 others by a special CBI judge in September 2013. He was disqualified as a member of the Parliament and restricted from contesting elections including those of the Assembly/Council, for six years from the date of their release from jail.

In November, the following year, the CBI challenged the order of the Jharkhand High Court quashing four pending fodder scam cases against Prasad. It said that a person convicted in one case cannot be tried in similar cases based on the same evidence and witness. The court upholds the CBI plea to continue proceedings in the trial court against Prasad under two sections.

In May 2017, the Supreme Court said that Prasad and other accused will be tried separately under corruption charges over the withdrawal of Rs 84.53 lakh and falsification of records from the Deoghar Treasury.

In December 2017, the special CBI court in Ranchi pronounced Yadav guilty in the Rs 950-crore fodder scam case.