The Patiala House Court in New Delhi on Monday adjourned the hearing in the Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation scam and posted the matter for December 20, ANI reported.

The court directed Rashtriya Janata Dal chief Lalu Prasad Yadav, an accused in the case, to appear through videoconferencing. It asked the Central Bureau of Investigation and the Enforcement Directorate to make all arrangements to ensure his presence either from hospital or from jail.

Special Judge Arun Bharadwaj passed the order after he was told that Yadav was unable to appear before the court due to ill health.

At the previous hearing on October 6 too, Yadav had not appeared before the court, reportedly on the advice of his doctors. The court had then fixed the matter for November 19 and asked Yadav to appear before it via videoconferencing.

Yadav is serving time in jail after his conviction in four fodder scam cases, but is currently hospitalised at the Rajendra Institute of Medical Sciences in Ranchi. He was convicted in three fodder scam cases.

The court had earlier granted bail to former Bihar Chief Minister Rabri Devi, former Deputy Chief Minister Tejashwi Yadav and other accused in the IRCTC case. The case relates to alleged irregularities in a tender awarded to a private company called Sujata Hotels to develop and operate two railway hotels in Ranchi and Puri in 2005, when Lalu Prasad Yadav was the Union railways minister. In return, he allegedly received a three-acre plot worth Rs 45 crore through a benami company owned by the wife of a Rashtriya Janata Dal parliamentarian.

The Enforcement Directorate had registered a criminal case against the accused under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act based on a First Information Report filed by the Central Bureau of Investigation in April.

The Enforcement Directorate in August had filed its first chargesheet against Yadav, Rabri Devi and others. It also named Tejashwi Yadav, former Union minister Prem Chand Gupta and his wife Sarla Gupta, a company Lara Projects (earlier known as Delight Marketing Private Limited), and 10 others.

The CBI had also filed a chargesheet against Yadav, his wife and son, and 11 others in the case