NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court today sought the response of RJD supremo Lalu Prasad on CBI's plea against dropping of conspiracy charge against him by the Jharkhand High Court in one of the fodder scam cases.
A bench comprising Justices Madan B Lokur and S A Bobde issued notice to the Bihar politician and sought his response within four weeks on a fresh plea filed by the CBI through the Jharkhand government.
Earlier, Prasad was convicted and sentenced to five years jail in one of the cases arising out of the fodder scam, following which he was consequently disqualified from contesting any election.
A special CBI court in Ranchi had convicted Prasad and 44 others in September last year in the case relating to fraudulent withdrawal of Rs 37.70 crore from Chaibasa treasury in 1994-95 in the fodder scam. He was later granted bail by the Supreme Court in December the same year.
The CBI filed the latest appeal against the Jharkhand High Court order upholding the agency's plea to continue proceedings in the trial court against Prasad under two sections, while dropping other charges on the grounds that a person cannot be tried twice for the same offence.
The High Court had ordered that proceedings against him be continued under IPC sections 201 (causing disappearance of evidence of an offence committed or giving false information) and 511 (attempting to commit offences punishable with imprisonment for life or imprisonment, and in such attempt doing any act towards the commission of the offence).
The charges are in connection with the case pertaining to fraudulent withdrawal of Rs 96 lakh during the chief ministerial tenure of the RJD chief.
The High Court, however, had dropped IPC 120, 120B, 409, 420, 471, 477, 477A and 13(2) under Prevention of Corruption Act against Prasad, giving him relief under section 300 of the Code of Criminal Procedure Act and Article 22 of the Constitution which states that a person once convicted or acquitted cannot to be tried for the same offence again.
Prasad had moved the petition in the High Court for relief under the CrPC section after he was found guilty by the CBI court on September 30 last year in the fodder scam case pertaining to fraudulent withdrawal of Rs 37.7 crore from Chaibasa Treasury.