Patna: RJD president Lalu Prasad and former Bihar chief minister Jagannath Mishra today appeared in a special CBI court in Patna following its direction in connection with a multi-crore rupee fodder scam case.
In pursuance of the order of Special CBI court judge Devraj Tripathi for personal appearance of all the 31 accused, Mr Prasad, Mr Mishra and others including some IAS officers were present in the court.
Mr Prasad’s lawyer Chitranjan Sinha apprised the court of the presence of his client.
After a brief session in the jam-packed Special CBI court, the judge fixed May 10 as next date for hearing of the case relating to withdrawal of Rs. 46 lakh illegally from treasuries in Bhagalpur and Banka by the Animal Husbandry department between 1994 to 1996.
Besides the two, Animal Husbandry Department minister in previous RJD government Vidya Sagar Nishad, former RJD lawmaker RK Rana and some retired IAS officers like Beck Julius and Phoolchand Singh were present in the court among others.
Besides Mr Prasad and Mr Mishra, 29 others are accused in the fodder scam case lodged by CBI on May 15, 1996.
As Mr Prasad came out of the court after appearance in the morning, a large number of RJD workers holding party flags shouted slogan in support of the party chief.
The chargesheet was submitted in the case against 44 persons in 2003.
The RJD chief and Mr Mishra are currently on bail after conviction in the case.
The fodder scam relates to fraudulent withdrawal of around Rs. 1,000 crore by Animal Husbandry department from various districts when Mr Prasad served as the chief minister of Bihar from 1990 to 1997.
Mr Prasad had to give up his chief minister’s post when he was first arrested in the case in 1997 and had handed over the reins to his wife Rabri Devi.
After conviction in a case of fodder scam in Ranchi, Mr Prasad was disqualified from Lok Sabha in accordance with the new law and is still debarred from contesting polls.