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Supreme Court rules Lalu be tried for criminal conspiracy in fodder scam

The Supreme Court on Monday overturned the Jharkhand High Court verdict dropping conspiracy charges against Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) chief Lalu Prasad Yadav in the Rs 900 crore fodder scam case.

The Supreme Court, in response to a CBI plea opposing the dropping of charges, directed that the RJD chief would be tried for criminal conspiracy in the case.

It also said that the trial had to be completed within 9 months.

The apex court earlier on April 20 reserved its judgement in the case and asked all parties concerned to give their submissions within a week.

The court also heard the plea filed by RJD supremo challenging his jail sentence in connection with the mid-1990s fodder scam case.

The CBI had filed a plea in the apex court against the dropping of a conspiracy charge against Lalu Prasad by the Jharkhand High Court in one of the fodder scam cases.

The probe agency then filed its latest appeal against the High Court order upholding the agency’s plea to continue proceedings in the trial court against Prasad under two sections, while dropping other charges on grounds that a person could not be tried twice for the same offence.

The High Court had ordered that proceedings against Yadav be continued under IPC Sections 201 (causing disappearance of evidence of an offence committed or giving false information) and 511 (attempting to commit offences punishable with imprisonment for life or imprisonment, and in such attempt doing any act towards the commission of the offence).

The charges are in connection with a case pertaining to fraudulent withdrawal of Rs 96 lakh during Yadav’s chief ministerial tenure.

The fodder scam relates to fraudulent withdrawal of around Rs 900 crore by the Animal Husbandry department from various districts when Lalu was the Bihar chief minister from 1990 to 1997.

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