Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) chief Lalu Prasad Yadav was granted bail by the Jharkhand High Court in the Chaibasa treasury case related to the fodder scam on Friday. However, the former Bihar CM will continue to remain in jail since the Dumka treasury case is still pending. The granting of bail to RJD supremo is significant in the backdrop of the Bihar elections scheduled in 3 phases starting from October 28. Lalu is currently lodged at a Ranchi hospital and is undergoing treatment for multiple ailments. The 72-year-old RJD supremo has been serving time in Birsa Munda jail in Ranchi.
A special CBI court in Ranchi in January, 2018 had convicted Yadav in the multi-crore fodder scam related to the fraudulent withdrawal of money from the Chaibasa treasury in 1990s. The court had handed both Lalu and former CM Jagannath Mishra a jail term of five years, besides a fine of Rs. 5 lakh each.
The High Court asked Yadav to submit two personal bonds of Rs 50,000 each and deposit penalty of Rs 2 lakh for securing bail. It also sought his medical report and the details of all those he has met during the course of his treatment at Rajendra Institute of Medical Sciences in Ranchi.
The bail granted comes in the footsteps of another development, the death of Union Minister Ram Vilas Paswan, who died on Thursday, just days before the election which holds high stakes for his son Chirag Paswan. Soon after news of Paswan’s death emerged, there was speculation that it could impact Chirag Paswan’s political strategy against Bihar CM Nitish Kumar.
On the other hand, the Rashtriya Lok Samata Party of Upendra Kushwaha and the All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen of Hyderabad MP Asaduddin Owaisi on Thursday announced the formation of a third front of six parties for Bihar polls whose chief ministerial candidate will be Kushwaha. The opposition in Bihar has been attacking the state government over the unemployment among migrant labourers, who returned home during the lockdown, and the response of the Nitish Kumar government to the Covid-19 pandemic.