The Central Bureau of Investigation on Tuesday questioned former Bihar chief minister Lalu Prasad Yadav in connection with an alleged corruption case, PTI reported.
The case pertains to allegations that Yadav took land from job aspirants in return for employment with the railways. The scam allegedly took place when he was the Union Railway minister in the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance government.
On Monday, the central agency questioned Rashtriya Janata Dal chief’s wife Rabri Devi in the case. This was five months after the Central Bureau of Investigation filed a chargesheet against Devi, Yadav as well as 13 others in the case. The accused persons have also been summoned by the agency on March 15, reported PTI.
The Central Bureau of Investigation initiated a preliminary inquiry into the matter in September 2021 and filed a first information report on May 18.
Yadav’s daughter Misa Bharti and a former general manager of the Railways have also been named as accused persons in the chargesheet filed before a special Central Bureau of Investigation court.
The central agency has alleged that candidates were appointed as substitutes in Group D positions in the Railways within three days of applying in “undue haste”. The appointments were later regularised when the “individuals themselves or their family members transferred their land”.
Deputy Chief Minister of Bihar and Yadav’s son Tejashwi Yadav on Tuesday said that the questioning was a result of his family’s opposition to the Bharatiya Janata Party, reported PTI.
“It is an open secret that probe agencies are acting against political opponents of the BJP and helping those who agree to align with that party,” the RJD leader had told reporters outside the Bihar Assembly on Monday.
On April 22, the former union minister was granted bail in the Rs 139.35-crore Doranda treasury case related to the fodder scam. The alleged fodder scam, exposed in 1996, pertains to the embezzlement of around Rs 1,000 crore from the state exchequer to buy medicine and fodder for cattle that did not actually exist. Yadav was the chief minister of the state at the time.
On February 21, 2022, a special Central Bureau of Investigation court in Ranchi had sentenced Yadav to jail for five years in the case. The court had also imposed a fine of Rs 60 lakh on him.
Yadav has already been convicted in four other cases related to the scam. They pertain to the alleged fraudulent withdrawal of Rs 37.7 crore and Rs 33.13 crore from the Chaibasa treasury, Rs 89.27 crore from the Deoghar treasury and Rs 3.76 crore from the Dumka treasury.