Senior Indian politician Lalu Prasad Yadav was Thursday jailed for five years by a court in a fodder scam case, thus virtually ending his political career.
New Delhi, Oct 3/Nationalturk –The colourful Indian politician and former Indian Railways Minister Lalu Prasad Yadav was Thursday jailed for five years by a court in a fodder scam case.
A special CBI court today awarded Lalu Prasad, who is former Chief Minister of Indian state of Bihar, to five years in prison and imposed a fine of Rs 25 lakh (Indian currency) in fodder scam.
44 others including politicians including former Chief Minister of Bihar and bureaucrats were also convicted by court on charges of fradulently withdrawing Rs 37.70 crore from treasury in mid 1990s. The case is related to a larger scam which saw huge amounts of government money – nearly 950 crores – being used to pay fictitious bills for medicines and fodder for cattle and the scam had been unfolded when Lalu was Chief Minister of Bihar.
Lalu and other convicts in the case heard the verdict via video conference.
Lalu to lose membership of Indian parliament
After today’s sentencing, Lalu Prasad Yadav, who is a colourful Indian politician, become the second Indian politician to lose membership of Parliament. He now automatically stands disqualified as a lawmaker.
Indian Supreme Court had in August ruled that convicted law-makers stand disqualified immediately.
The former Indian Railways minister will effectively be out of the electoral arena for 11 years as the apex court has ruled that a legislator will remain disqualified for a further six years from the date of release unless a higher court overturns both the conviction and sentencing.
“A convicted person can contest an election if his/her conviction and sentence — both are stayed by a superior court,” the supreme court had said.
Lalu’s party to appeal against verdict
A spokesperson of Lalu Prasad Yadav’s Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) has said the party will appeal against the verdict.
Lalu’s wife Rabri Devi told media persons that there was no evidence against her husband in the fodder scam case.
“We would fight the verdict electorally. Lalu has become a victim of political conspiracy as there was no proof against him,” she said adding they expected justice from the court but were disappointed.
On Monday, special CBI judge Pravas Kumar K Singh held Lalu and 44 others guilty in the fodder scam case. Lalu has been convicted of corruption, criminal conspiracy and cheating.
65-year-old Lalu Prasad has been in jail in Ranchi in Indian State of Bihar since Monday, when he was found guilty of facilitating the embezzlement of 37.7 crores (Indian currency) of government money for fictitious medicines and fodder for cattle. The verdict came 17 years after the case was registered.
Write your comments and thoughts below
Faiz Ahmad / NationalTurk India News