SC breather for Lalu in fodder scam

SC breather for Lalu in fodder scam

The Supreme Court on Tuesday provided a breather to Rashtriya Janata Dal chief Lalu  Yadav by directing a special CBI court in Ranchi not to pronounce verdict on July 15 in a fodder scam case involving the former Bihar chief minister.

A bench of Justices P Sathasivam and J Chelameswar passed the brief order on Yadav’s plea alleging bias against CBI judge Pravas Kumar Singh since he was a relative of Bihar education minister and Janata Dal-United leader in the Nitish Kumar government, P K Shahi.

“My biggest political enemy is Nitish Kumar,” senior counsel Ram Jethmalani, representing Yadav, told the court.

Following a brief hearing, the court issued notice to the CBI, which investigated the case, to respond to Yadav’s petition within two weeks.

While posting the matter for hearing on July 23, the bench said: “Let the CBI file its response; if it says there was no bias, we will dismiss the petition. The issue, however, requires our examination, whether the allegations are correct or not.”

Yadav wanted the case involving embezzlement of Rs 35 crore to be transferred from a Ranchi court to some other court. The Rs 900-crore scam involved transfer of money from state exchequer for buying fodder for non-existent livestock in 1990s during Lalu’s regime.

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