NEW DELHI, March 15 (PTI): A Delhi court on Wednesday gave bail to RJD leader Lalu Prasad Yadav, his wife and former Bihar chief minister Rabri Devi, their daughter Misa Bharti and others in connection with a case related to the alleged land-for-job scam.
Lalu Prasad, 74, who underwent a kidney transplant recently and was in a wheelchair, reached the Rouse Avenue court around 1000hrs but proceedings were delayed. The family appeared before special judge Geetanjali Goel around 1100hrs.
Granting relief to the accused on a personal bond of Rs 50,000 and one surety of the like amount each, the court posted the matter for further proceedings on March 29.
The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) did not oppose the bail pleas.
The case relates to alleged appointments made in the railways in return for land parcels gifted or sold to Lalu Prasad’s family when he was railway minister between 2004 and 2009.
The CBI, in its charge sheet, alleged that irregular appointments were made in the railways, violating laid down norms and procedures of Indian Railways for recruitment.
As a quid pro quo, it alleged, the candidates directly or through their immediate relatives and family members sold land to Lalu Prasad’s family members at highly discounted rates up to one-fifth of the prevailing market rates.
On February 27, special judge Goel issued summons to the accused persons, including Lalu Prasad, Rabri Devi and Misa Bharti, and directed them to appear before the court on Wednesday.
“A perusal of the charge sheet and the documents and material on record prima facie shows commission of offences under Section 120B (criminal conspiracy), read with sections 420 (cheating), 467 (forgery of valuable security, will, etc.), 468 (forgery for purpose of cheating) and 471 (using forged document as genuine) of the IPC and various sections of the Prevention of Corruption Act. Accordingly, cognizance is taken of the said offences,” the judge had said.
The judge noted that the charge sheet was filed without arrest, except in the case of one person who is on bail at present.
In July 2022, the CBI arrested Bhola Yadav, who was officer on special duty (OSD) to Lalu Prasad when he was railway minister, in the case.
The charge sheet was filed on October 10 last year for offences of criminal conspiracy and corruption against 16 accused persons.
The final report also named former general manager of Central Railways, Sowmya Raghavan, former CPO Railways Kamal Deep Mainrai, seven aspirants appointed as substitutes and four private individuals.
According to the charge sheet, the case was registered pursuant to the outcome of a preliminary inquiry against Lalu Prasad and others.