Fodder Scam: Lalu Yadav Granted Bail, May Be Released Soon

Yadav is facing charges in the fodder scam case related to fraudulent withdrawal from the Dumka Treasury.

2 min read
Former Bihar Chief Minister and RJD leader Lalu Prasad Yadav. Image used for representation only. 

The Jharkhand High Court on Saturday, 17 April, granted bail to Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) leader Lalu Prasad Yadav in the fodder scam case related to fraudulent withdrawal from Dumka Treasury.

The development comes after the high court in the previous hearing on 19 February had rejected Yadav’s bail plea, saying that two months were left to complete half of the jail sentence and bail could be granted only after that.

After the plea was rejected, Yadav's lawyer had claimed that the two-month jail period has not been counted, adding that the politician had been in judicial custody for one month in 1997 and one month in 2001.

Yadav was sentenced to seven years in jail in the case.

When Will Lalu Be Released?

Birendra Bhushan, IG Prisons, told news agency ANI that he has not yet received the order copy and that Yadav may be released from AIIMS, Delhi, where the RJD supremo is currently admitted.

“We will go through the order copy, once we receive it. Following the procedure, we will inform the RIMS and AIIMS, Delhi that now he is not a prisoner. Till now AIIMS has been sending Lalu’s health updates. He may be released from AIIMS directly,” he said.

Lalu was admitted to AIIMS, Delhi, in January after his health condition deteriorated while undergoing treatment at a hospital in Ranchi. He has since been at the coronary care unit (CCU) of the cardiothoracic centre at AIIMS.

‘Happy About the Bail but Worried About His Health’

Speaking to the media, Yadav’s son and former Bihar deputy CM Tejashwi Yadav thanked the HC and said that the family is worried about his health.

“We were confident that we will get justice. Lalu ji has served half of his sentence, High Court granted him bail on that ground. We thank the High Court. He is admitted at AIIMS. We are happy he got bail but we are worried about his health,” Tejashwi was quoted by ANI as saying.

“He is suffering from serious ailments. His treatment will continue. People, especially the poor, are happy that their messiah will be released now,” he added.

The Fodder Scam

The RJD supremo has been convicted in four fodder scam cases. He was convicted in the first case in 2013 and in two more cases in 2017 and 2018.

This particular case pertains to the scandalous withdrawal of Rs 3.5 crore from the Dumka treasury by the officials of the Animal Husbandry Department between the period of 1991 and 1996 when Yadav served as the chief minister.

Yadav has been in prison since December 2017 and was sentenced to seven years of jail in 2018 under the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and seven years under the Prevention of Corruption Act in relation to the fodder scam case.

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