Ranchi: In a major development, a special CBI court on Tuesday convicted 64 accused in a multi-crore fodder scam following fraudulent withdrawal of Rs 12.98 crore from Doranda Treasury within three months in 1995.

The special CBI court of NN Singh convicted 64 accused and sentenced between two and six years in prison and imposed varying penalty upto Rs five lakh.

The CBI had filed fraudulent cases against 79 accused out of which 13 have died.

Among those convicted are former regional director of Animal Husbandry department Junul Bhengraj and ex-assistant regional director K M Prasad.

This was the 40th of the total 53 fodder cases which ended in conviction. The total scam was assessed at about Rs 950 crore.

The special CBI court sentenced six years rigorous imprisonment to former Regional Directors (AHD) Dr K N Jha and Dr Junul Bhengraj and fined Rs 5 lakh as penalty on each of the ex-officials.

Former Regional Director Om Prakash Diwakar, ex-assistant director Dr K M Prasad and ex-regional joint director Dr Radha Raman Sahay were each awarded five years RI and each fined Rs 5 lakh by the court.

The same quantum of sentence was awarded to ex-AHD project officers Dr BB Singh and Dr SK Bharti, ex-managers (pig breeding farm) Rameshwar Narain Pandey, Dr L P Yadav, Dr N R Prasad, former research officer Dr Sandeep Kumar, Dr Deepak Kumar, and veterinary doctors Krishna Kumar, K B Lal, former district AHD officers Dr Manoranjan Prasad, Hemendranath and former research officer Dr Sunil Kumar Singh.

The special court awarded six years prison term and slapped Rs five lakh as fine on fodder supplier BB Prasad.

Some of the former officials and suppliers were convicted in more than one fodder case and would serve prison terms separately while their days spent in jail during investigation and trial would be deducted, according to a CBI official.

Lalu, Jaganath to appear before court on Feb 4

The high profile accused former Chief Minister of Bihar Lalu Prasad Yadav, Jagannath Mishra, Dhruv Bhagat, Dr RK Rana and other accused in the multi-crore scam have to appear before the CBI court on February 4.

The statements of all the accused will be recorded under the Sec 313 CrPc in the special CBI court of Justice P K Singh.

“The court has fixed February 13-15 for recording the statements of the accused in the fodder scam,” said public prosecutor BMP Singh.

Prabhat Kumar, the counsel of RJD chief, said that out of the 459 witnesses produced by the CBI so far, the statements of 350 have been recorded with the court.

JPN/Bureau/Agencies