Ranchi [Jharkhand]: The decision on moving to the High Court in connection with the conviction of Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) chief Lalu Prasad will be taken after the quantum of the sentence pronounced in the fodder scam case, his lawyer said on Monday.
After Lalu’s conviction for fraudulently withdrawing Rs. 3.13 crore from Dumka Treasury between December 1995 and January 1996 when he was the chief minister of undivided Bihar, his lawyer Prabhat Kumar said: “The sentencing will be pronounced on Friday and it is only after the quantum of punishment we will decide on moving the high court in the case.”
Kumar said he had hoped for a relief in the fourth fodder scam verdict by the special Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) court here.
The court acquitted former chief minister of Bihar Jagannath Mishra and eight others in the case. At least 30 persons were involved in the scam.
According to the lawyer, the court asked the RJD chief to be present during the hearing even after its knowledge of him being sick and admitted to RIMS Hospital here.
Lalu’s wife Rabri Devi said they would stick to the court’s order for now and move to the high court.
When asked about Mishra’s acquittal, the three times chief minister of the state said this was “up to the court on who to convict and who to hold guilty”.
Without mentioning the name of the country’s biggest fraud accused — celebrated designer Nirav Modi and business mogul Vijay Mallya, Rabri Devi said: “We do not want to flee the country. We want to live and face the situation in Bihar.”
RJD leader Raghuvansh Prasad Singh, however, blamed Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led central government for the party chief’s conviction and said: “Ajab hai Narendra Modi aur Nitish ka mel, ajab hai khel, dubara se ho gaya Jagannath Mishra riha, aur Lalu Yadav ko jail. Ek aadmi ko jail, ek aadmi ko bail, ye hai Narendra Modi ka khel.”
Lalu, who has been admitted to the Rajendra Institute of Medical Sciences (RIMS) after falling sick in the jail on Saturday, was not present during the hearing. The accused however arrived in the court after it passed the order.
Lalu Prasad is already serving a jail term of 13.5 years in three fodder cases and has been lodged in the Birsa Munda jail here. (ANI)