The Patna High Court on Thursday issued notices to Railway Minister Lalu Prasad and his wife Rabri Devi on Bihar government's petition challenging their acquittal in a disproportionate assets case, an off-shoot of the multi-crore fodder scam.
Issuing the notices, Justice RK Dutta asked Lalu and Rabri, also a former chief minister, to explain why the Bihar government's appeal against their acquittal by a special CBI court should not be admitted.
The judge also asked the state government to submit requisite documents to the court within two weeks.
Harish Salve, senior Supreme Court lawyer appearing for the state government, quoted section 378 of the code of criminal procedure to defend the government's right to challenge the acquittal in cases where an offence was committed within the geographical limits of that state.
He quoted several apex court judgements to buttress his argument. "It is very difficult to understand that the prosecuting agency, the CBI, has instead of going in appeal chosen to uphold the acquittal of the very people whose conviction it had sought," he said, responding to Additional Solicitor General Gopal Subramanian's contention that the state could not move in appeal against the trial court's December 18 verdict.