CBI court to pronounce punishment against Lalu today

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Under the sections, Lalu can be sentenced a minimum jail term of one year and a maximum of seven years, his advocate Chittaranjan Prasad had said.

The special CBI court on Friday completed hearing the arguments of Lalu Prasad's lawyer but deferred pronouncing quantum of punishment for the RJD chief in the fodder scam.

"As per discussions held in the courtroom, there is all likelihood that the judge will pronounce the quantum of punishment to all convicts on Saturday through video conferencing", said Prasad's advocate Prabhat Kumar.

RC64A/96 relates to the fraudulent withdrawal from Deoghar Treasury with the help of 6 fake allotment letters during 1991 to 1994.

The former chief minister was supposed to be sentenced on Friday after the special CBI court deferred it twice i.e., once till Thursday (January 4) and then till Friday (January 5). Earlier, the judge said that he received phone calls from the RJD chief's well-wishers enquiring about the quantum of sentence for Lalu Prasad.

The 69-year-old RJD leader is lodged in the central jail since his conviction on December 23.

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Lalu Prasad Yadav, along with 15 others, was convicted previous year on December 23 in connection with RC-64/96, pertaining to alleged withdrawal of funds, using fraudulent methods, to the tune of Rs 89 lakhs from Deogarh Treasury between 1990 and 1994 when he was the chief minister of Bihar.

Without omitted a punch, CBI Special Court Judge Shiv Pal Singh, who was hearing the case, answered back, "Then, play tabla". With the court room packed, the judge asked the advocates not connected with the fodder scam case to leave. Six others, including another former chief minister, Jagannath Mishra, were acquitted.

Fifteen others, who were convicted in the scam, will also be sentenced today along with Lalu Prasad waited in the court.

The RJD supremo was later released on bail granted by the Supreme Court.

Meanwhile, the CBI court issued notices to senior RJD leader and party vice-president Raghuvansh Prasad Singh, Leader of the Opposition in Bihar Assembly Tejaswi Yadav, senior party leader Shivanand Tiwari and Congress spokesperson Manish Tiwari for "contempt of court".