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Two party workers get themselves arrested to land in same jail as Lalu

Mahto and Yadav, who were reportedly charged with minor offences, were claimed to be serving Prasad as helper and cook.

india Updated: Jan 09, 2018 20:07 IST
Bedanti Saran
Bedanti Saran
Hindustan Times, Ranchi
Lalu Prasad,Lalu Prasad conviction,Lalu Prasad in jail
RJD supremo Lalu Prasad Yadav escorted by police officials after being convicted by the special CBI court in fodder scam case, in Ranchi.(PTI Photo)

Two Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) workers surrendered in a false case to lodge themselves in Ranchi’s central jail on the same day party chief Lalu Prasad was convicted of corruption and remanded to the same prison, police said on Tuesday.

The two workers -- Madan Yadav and Lakshman Kumar – were both residents of Ranchi. They were named in a First Information Report (FIR) by another local resident, Sumit Yadav, who alleged the duo had beaten him up and stolen Rs 10,000 from him.

HT has seen a copy of the FIR, which said the incident happened around 8.15 am on December 23, the day Prasad was convicted in a fodder scam case. Sumit took his complaint to Doranda police station but the officer in-charge refused to register an FIR. Sumit then went to Lower Bazar police station where his complaint was accepted.

Within hours, Madan and Lakshman surrendered before a local court and were remanded in judicial custody to Ranchi’s Birsa Munda Central Jail.

Police officials said on the condition of anonymity that this entire process was completed before 4pm on December 23, when a special Central Bureau of Investigation court convicted Prasad.

The speed with which the process was completed aroused the police’s suspicion and a probe found that the complaint was false.

“We have found that the case lodged by Sumit was false and no incident of brawl between the parties took place. We will initiate action against them,” said Ranchi senior police superintendent Kuldip Dwivedi.

Prasad was held guilty of corruption, cheating and criminal conspiracy in connection with the fraudulent withdrawal of Rs 89.27 lakh from the Deoghar treasury during 1991-1994 on the pretext of buying fodder. The 69-year-old was sentenced to 3.5 years in jail and fined Rs 10 lakh by the court on January 6.

The RJD rubbished reports that Lakshman was Prasad’s cook but confirmed that both were party workers. “It’s wrong to say that the duo has gone to jail purposely. Both are party’s active workers and had been to jail in connection with a criminal case lodged against them with a Ranchi police station,” party spokesperson Shakti Singh Yadav said.

Madan and Lakshman have the same lawyer, who denied having any prior knowledge of a possible plot, but said that neither the accused nor their family have pressed for bail since December 23.

“They came to me and said they wanted to surrender. As per their instruction, I took a “vakaltnama” from them and filed a surrender-cum-bail application. Since, December 23 was the last working day of the court and due to paucity of time, their bail application could not be pressed,” the lawyer, who didn’t want to be named, said.

Police said Madan had also surrendered in 2013, a few days before Prasad was convicted in a similar case of corruption on September 30. The lawyer, who has been quoted above, said the case was of an election-related offence registered in 1998.

“Madan was charged with spraying ink on ballot papers during the polls at a booth. He was absconding in that case. He surrendered before the court in 2013 and later got bail. He was finally acquitted in that case.” Prasad also got bail from the Supreme Court in December that year.

First Published: Jan 09, 2018 18:35 IST