PATNA: After the Supreme Court recently revived criminal conspiracy charges against RJD chief Lalu Prasad Yadav in fodder scam cases, a special CBI court in Jharkhand on Tuesday ordered him and other accused to appear before it during the next hearing on June 9.
Judge SS Prasad ordered Yadav, former Bihar chief minister Jagannath Mishra of Congress and former Jharkhand chief secretary Sajal Chakraborty to remain present in the court in Ranchi.
The case (RC-64A/96) is related to fraudulent withdrawal of Rs 95 lakh from Deogarh treasury in Jharkhand between 1991 and 1993, when Bihar and Jharkhand were one State.
The summons sent ripples across political circles in Bihar as Yadav’s party is the biggest constituent in the State’s three-party coalition government headed by Chief Minister Nitish Kumar. Yadav, who was convicted in a fodder scam case in September 2013 and is currently on bail, is considered a strong, though unofficial, pillar of the State government.
The Supreme Court, while reviving the criminal conspiracy charges against Yadav on May 8, had asked the trial courts to complete proceedings in the four pending cases against him in the next nine months. Yadav is currently busy putting together a broad alliance of non-BJP parties to unseat the Narendra Modi-led government in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls. Analysts, however, say he has little time on his hands.
“This (summons) is a routine procedure of the court and it is no big deal,” said Bhola Prasad, an MLC and close aide of the RJD chief. The RJD chief is planning a big rally of several non-BJP parties in Patna on August 27. Preparations for the rally are on full swing, said Bhola Prasad. Yadav will also attend DMK supremo M Karunanidhi’s 94th birthday party in Chennai on June 3, he added.
Meanwhile, senior BJP leader Sushil Kumar Modi on Tuesday levelled more allegations of corruption against Yadav. The RJD chief, he said, has got two plots of land allotted in his name in violation of the MLA Cooperative Society’s bye-laws. Modi, a former Bihar deputy chief minister, had on Monday alleged Yadav’s wife Rabri Devi of acquiring prime land allotted to finance minister Abdul Bari Siddiqui and former minister Sudha Shrivastava when she was the CM of Bihar.