Former Bihar Chief Minister and RJD chief Lalu Prasad Yadav was on Saturday (December 23) convicted in a fodder scam case by a special CBI court in Ranchi.
Former Chief Minister Jagannath Mishra as well as six others were acquitted in the case.
The quantum of punishment will be announced on January 3, Special CBI judge Shivapal Singh ruled.
The case relates to fraudulent withdrawal of Rs 84.5 lakh from Deoghar district treasury.
Hearing was completed on December 13 in a special Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) court of Ranchi.
In all, there were 34 accused in the case, out of whom 11 died during the course of the trial, while one turned CBI approver and admitted the crime.
There are a total of six fodder scam cases against him and this is the second case in which a verdict has been pronounced.
Lalu was first convicted on September 30, 2013 and received a five-year jail term. This disqualified him from Parliament and barred him from standing in elections. He was granted bail by the Supreme Court later that year.
Meanwhile, the party has announced that it will challenge the verdict in the high court.
“The Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) will challenge the special CBI court’s order in the high court soon,” senior party leader Jagdanand Singh, considered close to Lalu Prasad, told the media in Patna.
A former state minister, Singh has termed the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) as “tota” (parrot) and robot, controlled by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led central government.
He asserted that the RJD was united and it would remain united.
“The RJD is one and united. We will politically fight against communal and fascist forces. As our leader Lalu Prasad has refused to bow before them, now he has been convicted in a baseless case under a conspiracy,” Singh said.
Soon after the court verdict in Ranchi, hundreds of RJD leaders and workers gathered outside 10, Circular Road, the official residence of Lalu Prasad’s wife and former Bihar Chief Minister Rabri Devi.
Most of them said the RJD chief had been convicted due to political vendetta.
“How come former Chief Minister Jagannath Mishra has been acquitted in the same fodder scam case in which Lalu Prasad is convicted? Mishra was acquitted for his support to the BJP, which has managed the CBI and Lalu was convicted for fighting against them,” RJD worker Santosh Rai said.
(With IANS inputs)