Fodder Scam: Quantum Of Punishment At 2 pm

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Ranchi: After deferring the verdict several times to debate the quantum of punishment for Rashtriya Janta Dal Chief Lalu Prasad Yadav who has been convicted in the Fodder scam, the verdict will finally be pronounced on Saturday by CBI court in Ranchi.

Citing illness and old age, RJD chief Lalu Prasad, convicted in a fodder scam case along with 10 others, on Friday sought leniency from the CBI court.

Lalu Prasad appeared before the court of CBI special judge Shiv Pal Singh for the sentencing hearing through videoconferencing from Birsa Munda central jail and in a written plea sought leniency due to his illness and old age, his counsel Chittaranjan Prasad said. The 69-year-old RJD leader is lodged in the central jail since his conviction on December 23.

“The judge said he would pronounce the judgement at 2 pm tomorrow,” Chittaranjan Prasad told reporters after emerging from the videoconferencing hall here.

The court had convicted Lalu Prasad for offences of cheating with criminal conspiracy under the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and the Prevention of Corruption Act.

Under the sections, Lalu Prasad can be sentenced to a minimum jail term of one year and maximum of seven years, according to Chittaranjan Prasad.

According to legal experts, Lalu Prasad would be able to apply for bail immediately at the lower court itself if the quantum of sentence happens to be less than three years, The court concluded arguments on the quantum of punishment against Lalu Prasad and 10 others in connection with the withdrawal of Rs 89.27 lakh from Deogarh Treasury between 1990 and 1994 when he was the chief minister of Bihar.

Earlier, he was awarded five years imprisonment in 2013 in a case relating to fraudulent withdrawal of Rs 33.61 crore from the Chaibasa treasury. The RJD supremo was later released on bail granted by the Supreme Court.

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