Ranchi, March 19: Special CBI court today convicted Former chief minister of Bihar and Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) supremo Lalu Prasad Yadav in fourth fodder scam case, and acquitted Jagannath Mishra. A special Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) court in its judgment said the RJD chief was guilty of fraudulently withdrawing Rs. 3.13 crore from Dumka Treasury between December 1995 and January 1996, when he was the chief minister of undivided Bihar. This is now the fourth case related to the Fodder Scam that Lalu Prasad Yadav has been convicted in. So what exactly is the whole fodder scam and why has Lalu Prasad Yadav got in this legal trouble ? Here is the answer:
This whole scam came to light on 27 January, 1996 when a raid was conducted in the offices of the Animal Husbandry department of Chaibasa in Bihar. The raid unearthed Rs 950- crore fodder scam and involved several big names from politics, none bigger than the then chief minister of state Lalu Prasad Yadav. The highlight of the case, as reported in Indian Express, was the transfer of huge government funds to companies for purchase and supply of of cattle fodder. It was later found that, the names of companies which were shown to have received funds, did not exist. In the end, the scam cost the government a total of 950 crores. In short, the fodder scam comprises 55 cases, all of which are related to the embezzlement of Rs 950 crores from the state exchequer between 1992 and 1995.
The four cases that Lalu Prasad Yadav has been convicted in are:
1.) Chaibasa Treasury: Yadav had already been convicted in one case (RC-20 (A)/9) in 2013, which involved the withdrawal of Rs 37.7 crore from the Chaibasa treasury, and it led to his disqualification from contesting elections.
2.) Deoghar treasury: The case, RC-64/96, pertained to fraudulent withdrawal of money of over Rs 89 lakhs from Deoghar treasury between 1991 and 1994, when Lalu Prasad Yadav was the Chief Minister and also held the Finance Department.
3.) Banka and Bhagalpur Treasuries: The court convicted and charged the RJD chief with fraudulent withdrawal of Rs 47 lakh from the treasuries at Banka and Bhagalpur districts. It was alleged that forged and fake bills were drawn by the Animal Husbandry Department in 1995-96 when Lalu was the CM. Jagannath Misra was among the 45 other convicts.
4) Dumka treasury: A special CBI court in Ranchi, on March 19, 2018, pronounced Lalu Prasad Yadav guilty in the fourth fodder scam case pertaining to alleged fraudulent withdrawal of Rs 3.5 crore from the Dumka treasury, which is now in Jharkhand over two decades ago. The court has acquitted Jagannath Mishra in the case.
There is another case pending in the court. The order on quantum of punishment will be passed after the arguments on March 21, 22 and 23. The judgement was pronounced by Judge Shivpal Singh.