Dumka fodder scam: CBI court awards jail terms to 37 convicts

Ranchi: A Special CBI court here on Wednesday handed jail terms ranging from three-and-a-half years to 14 years to 37 persons convicted in the fodder scam related to the fraudulent withdrawals from the Dumka treasury in the then undivided Bihar, an official said.

These convicts have been ordered to pay fines totalling Rs 29 crore.

On April 9, Special CBI Judge Shivapal Singh had convicted these 37 persons and acquitted five others.

Then Animal Husbandry Department’s Regional Director O.P. Diwakar was sentenced to a cumulative jail term of 14 years. He was given a seven-year jail term for conspiracy and another seven years under the Prevention of Corruption Act.

Three convicts, former department employees, were sentenced to seven years each in jail and a Rs 1 crore fine each.

The remaining 33 convicts were handed out jail terms of three-and-a-half years and Rs 50 lakh fine each.

The case (number RC 45A/96) related to fraudulent withdrawal of Rs 34.91 crore from the Dumka treasury during 1991-92 and 1995-96.

This is the 51st fodder scam case in which the CBI court has delivered a judgment.

In this case, the accused were suppliers and officials of the Animal Husbandry Department. No politician was an accused.

The FIR was lodged against 72 people in 1996 and charges were framed finally against 60 accused in 2004. Fourteen accused died during trial, two admitted to their crime and two are absconding.

The fodder scam came to light in 1996 after an FIR was lodged against then undivided Bihar’s Chief Minister Lalu Prasad.

He has been convicted in four cases and is in jail. He was awarded 14 years’ imprisonment on March 23. He is now admitted to AIIMS, New Delhi.

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