Sushil lists RJD chief's benami deals in 'Lalu-leela'

From ‘chara’ to ‘LaRa’ scam, book reveals a list of benami deals

In his new book, ‘Lalu-leela’, which was launched on Thursday on the occasion of the late Jaya Prakash Narayan’s (JP) birth anniversary, Sushil Modi recalled how he and Lalu joined the JP movement in 1974 in their fight against corruption. (Image source: Twitter/ Sushil Kumar Modi)

“Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose used to say: You give me blood, I will give you independence. Lalu would tell his party men: You give me your property. I will make you an MP, MLA or minister.” This is how Bihar Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Modi described Rashtriya Janata Dal supremo Lalu Prasad’s modus operandi to acquire ill-gotten wealth.

In his new book, ‘Lalu-leela’, which was launched on Thursday on the occasion of the late Jaya Prakash Narayan’s (JP) birth anniversary, Sushil Modi recalled how he and Lalu joined the JP movement in 1974 in their fight against corruption.

“But the same Lalu, despite going to jail in ‘chara ghotala’ (fodder scam), continued to mint money through dubious means. He would ask his party leaders to either gift their property to his children or acquired their property through shell companies. No wonder, today Lalu (and his family) own 141 plots, 30 flats and six residences,” said Sushil Modi.

To buttress his point, the deputy chief minister cites the example of two former Union ministers from the RJD in the UPA-I government – Kanti Singh and Raghunath Jha - who gifted their property to Rabri Devi, and Tejashwi and Tej Pratap, respectively.


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“Kanti Singh, who was Union minister of state for HRD in the Manmohan Singh government, gave around 1 acre to Lalu’s wife Rabri Devi on March 13, 2006. This deal was executed to ensure that Kanti continued as a Union minister. Similarly, Raghunath Jha in 2005 gifted six kathas of land, along with a three-storeyed building in Gopalganj, to Lalu’s sons Tej Pratap and Tejashwi in lieu of being sworn in as Union minister of state for heavy industries,” said Sushil Modi, backed by documentary evidence in his book.

Similarly, Lalu’s elder son Tej Pratap has been charged with opening a petrol pump outlet on National Highway 30, on the outskirts of Patna, by submitting false documents.

Pratap has also been charged with concealing this property while declaring his assets and liabilities in 2015 (before the Bihar Assembly election), even though the BPCL petrol pump was allotted to him in 2011. The petrol pump has now been sealed and the deal cancelled. “Even the petrol pump land was leased to Lalu’s son by an industrialist, Amit Katiyal, who had set up a beer bottling plant in Bihar,” says Sushil Modi.

The worst is land-for-hotel scam, also called IRCTC scam, where Lalu acquired the land of Kochar brothers, owner of Sujata hotels. This land (for a shopping mall in Patna) was reportedly transferred by industrialists Harsh and Vinay Kochar to Delight Marketing Pvt Ltd, owned by the then RJD Rajya Sabha MP Prem Gupta, a Lalu confidant, in 2005.

The "deal" was struck after the Kochar brothers were awarded two hotels belonging to the Railways at Ranchi (Jharkhand) and Puri (Odisha) during Lalu’s tenure as railway minister (from 2004 to 2009). Eventually, the Delight Marketing Pvt Ltd was transferred to Lalu’s family along with the assets in 2014 and renamed as ‘LaRa Projects’ (an acronym for Lalu and Rabri) in 2016.

The RJD hit out at Sushil Modi and charged him with suffering from Lalu-phobia. “There is nothing new in Sushil Modi’s book. All the details are already in the public domain,” RJD vice-president Shivanad Tiwary told DH.

READ MORE:

Timeline of the Fodder Scam

Lalu convicted in fourth fodder scam case, Mishra acquitted

IRCTC scam case: Rabri Devi, Tejashwi Yadav get bail

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Sushil lists RJD chief's benami deals in 'Lalu-leela'

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