Lalu Yadav has been convicted but judgement regarding the case will be announced on 3rd January by court
The Fodder Scam In Nutshell:
The scam had its origins in small-scale embezzlement by some government employees submitting false expense reports, which grew in magnitude and drew additional elements, such as politicians and businesses, over time, until a full-fledged mafia had formed. Jagannath Mishra, who served his first stint as the chief minister of Bihar in the mid-1970s, was the earliest chief minister to be accused of knowing involvement in the scam.
In February 1985, the then Comptroller and Auditor General of India, T.N. Chaturvedi, took notice of delayed monthly account submissions by the Bihar state treasury and departments and wrote to the then Bihar chief minister, Chandrashekhar Singh, warning him that this could be indicative of temporary embezzlement.This initiated a continuous chain of closer scrutiny and warnings by Principal Accountant Generals (PAGs) and CAGs to the Bihar government across the tenures of multiple chief ministers (cutting across party affiliations), but the warnings were ignored in a manner that was suggestive of a pattern by extremely senior political and bureaucratic officials in the Bihar government.In 1992, Bidhu Bhushan Dvivedi, a police inspector with the state’s anti-corruption vigilance unit submitted a report outlining the fodder scam and likely involvement at the chief ministerial level to the director general of the same vigilance unit, G. Narayan.In alleged reprisal, Dvivedi was transferred out of the vigilance unit to a different branch of the administration, and then suspended from his position. He was later to be a witness as corruption cases relating to the scam went to trial, and reinstated by order of the Jharkhand High Court.
Exposure and investigation
Bihar Veterinary Association for the first time exposed Animal Husbandry Mafia in its 1985 Press Conference. In 1990 the executive committee of Bihar Veterinary Association was changed and Dr Dinneshwar prasad sharma was made the General Secretary of BVA . Once the mafia had control over the association, they went all guns blazing. At that point Dr. Dharmendra Sinha and Dr. Biresh Prasad Sinha ( The Ex-office bearers of BVA) started collecting and gathering information against this whole unethical practice of Mafia. They exposed this to all the political guns of Bihar. Among all these political guns were Sushil Kumar Modi who initiated the whole episode after it was broken out by Amit Khare. On 27 January 1996, the deputy commissioner of West Singhbhum district, Amit Khare, acted on information to conduct a raid on the offices of the animal husbandry department in the town of Chaibasa in the district under his authority.
The documents his team seized, and went public with, conclusively indicated large-scale embezzlement by an organised mafia of officials and business people. The news of fodder scam was first broken out by Indian journalist Ravi S Jha, who working with the Asian Age then in Calcutta, named the then Bihar Chief Minister of having implicit involvement in the scam. Based on evidence collected by him from Chaibasa, Jha not only found out widespread involvement of Bihar government machinery in the scam, he even mentioned how earlier governments too were taking advantage of a shoddy system, where top government officials along with the ministers were flouting norms to make money illegally.
Jha, an Associate Director of Public Affairs, is currently working with anti-corruption crusader and good governance promoter Rajeev Chandrasekhar, the Rajya Sabha Member of Parliament. Laloo ordered the constitution of a committee to probe the irregularities. There were fears that state police, which is accountable to the state administration, and the probe committee would not investigate the case vigorously, and demands were raised to transfer the case to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), which is under federal rather than state jurisdiction. Allegations were also made that several of the probe committee members were themselves complicit in the scam. A public interest litigation was filed with the Supreme Court of India, which led to the court’s involvement,and based on the ultimate directions issued by the supreme court, on March 1996, the Patna High Court ordered that the case be handed over to the CBI.
An inquiry by the CBI began and, within days, the CBI filed a submission to the High Court that Bihar officials and legislators were blocking access to documents that could reveal the existence of a politician-official-business mafia nexus at work.Some legislators of the Bihar Legislative Council responded by claiming the court had been misinformed by the CBI and initiating a privilege motion to discuss possible action against senior figures in the regional headquarters of the CBI, which could proceed similar to a contempt of court proceeding and result in stalling the investigation or even prosecution of the named CBI officials.
However, U. N. Biswas, the regional CBI director, and the other officials tendered an unqualified apology to the Legislative Council, the privilege motion was dropped, and the CBI probe continued. As the investigation proceeded, the CBI unearthed linkages to the serving chief minister of Bihar, Laloo Prasad Yadav and, on 10 May 1997, made a formal request to the federally-appointed Governor of Bihar to prosecute Laloo (who is often referred by his first name in Indian media). On the same day, a businessman, Harish Khandelwal, who was one of the accused was found dead on train tracks with a note that stated that he was being coerced by the CBI to turn witness for the prosecution.
The CBI rejected the charge and its local director, U. N. Biswas, kept the appeal to the governor in place.An Income Tax Investigation also blamed Laloo for the scam. On 8 May 2017, In a major set back for RJD leader Lalu Prasad Yadav, the Supreme Court has ordered separate trials in all four cases registered against him in the Rs. 1000 crore fodder scam. The SC was hearing a CBI plea challenging the Jharkhand High Court’s dropping of conspiracy charges against him. The SC asked the trial court to complete the trial in 9 months.