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Tuesday, Aug 20, 2019

Madhu Koda: Labourer who took to farming, through CM office, is now a convict

A special CBI court found former Jharkhand chief minister Madhu Koda and former coal secretary HC Gupta guilty of corruption and other charges in a coal scam case.

india Updated: Dec 13, 2017 23:04 IST
Bedanti Saran
Bedanti Saran
Hindustan Times, Ranchi
Former Jharkhand CM Madhu Koda relaxes after cultivating his plot in native Patahatu village in West Singhbhum on July 23, 2017.
Former Jharkhand CM Madhu Koda relaxes after cultivating his plot in native Patahatu village in West Singhbhum on July 23, 2017.(HT File )

From being a labourer at SAIL’s Gua iron ore mine to gaining the distinction of being the longest serving independent legislator who held the chief minister’s post, to now being convicted in coal scam — life has come full circle for Madhu Koda.

Whiling away his time squatting beside thoroughfare of Jagannathpur and sipping tea with former associates, the former CM was leading a commoner’s life in West Singhbhum district before being convicted in the coal scam. He had taken up farming this rainy season and himself ploughed his ancestral field with the help of two oxen.

“I belong to a farmer’s family and am not ashamed of ploughing the field. It’s sowing period and I am preparing the field with help of other labourers,” Koda, who graduated through distance learning, had said in August.

While he remained at the helm of the affairs in the state for close to two years — 709 days to be precise — the decline in his political career became evident when losses began to show up frequently in 2014, first in parliamentary, then Assembly polls.

Koda lost from Majhgaon Assembly seat in 2014, but his wife continues to be a two-time legislator from his home constituency Jagannathpur, which Koda has represented twice.

If awarded punishment of more than two years Thursday, Koda will be barred from contesting polls for next six years.

The last eight years also marked the worst phase in Koda’s life, as he remained confined in jail for over three years as an undertrial in connection with the ~3,500-crore money laundering scam and was once brutally roughed up by inmates at Birsa Munda Central Jail in which he fractured his hand.

As an incarcerated MP, Koda, who started his life as an RSS worker, attended sessions in police custody and also shared space with Tihar jail inmates.

First Published: Dec 13, 2017 22:59 IST

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