Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) chief Lalu Prasad Yadav’s quantum of sentence in the multi-million-rupee fodder scam has once again been deferred. Lalu Yadav was convicted in the case by a Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) court in Ranchi on December 23 in a case of fraudulent withdrawal of approx Rs 90 lakhs from Deoghar Treasury. Earlier the quantum of sentence was to be announced on January 3 but the decision got deferred. Once again the quantum of sentence has been deferred and it is likely to be announced on Friday.

CBI lawyer requested the Ranchi Special CBI Court judge to give maximum sentence to the accused so that no one tries to commit such a heinous crime. Ranchi Special CBI Court judge told Lalu Prasad Yadav that ‘I got many references for you but don’t worry, I will follow only law.’ The CBI Court Judge Shivpal Singh told PTI that he was getting phone calls from Lalu’s men. The sentencing was postponed for Thursday due to the passing away of advocate Vindeshwari Prasad. According to legal experts, the quantum of sentence in a case of 420 and 120(B) can range from 1 to 7 years.

Once the sentence is announced, the RJD chief is likely to approach a higher court for the same. The CBI court in Ranchi found Lalu Prasad Yadav guilty but acquitted former CM Jagannath Mishra. Lalu Prasad Yadav is currently lodged in the Hotwar jail in Ranchi. On Wednesday, the RJD leaders and party workers said that they are hoping for a jail term less than three years for the party chief. The 69-year-old politician can immediately apply for bail in the lower court if the quantum of punishment is less than three years in the case.

The chief lawyer of Rashtriya Janata Party (RJD) on Wednesday had said that they would press for minimum punishment in the case. “Lalu is 70 years old and suffering from many diseases. We will seek minimum punishment for him,” he said. If Lalu Yadav is pronounced a jail term of less than 3 years, then he can immediately apply for a bail in the lower court, therefore it is expected that Lalu’s team will definitely press a jail term less than 3 years. However, it is believed that Lalu Prasad can be awarded three to seven years punishment.

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