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The Supreme Court on Friday sought the response of Rashtriya Janata Dal chief Lalu Prasad Yadav on a petition challenging an order of the Jharkhand High Court granting bail to him in a fodder scam case.

A bench of Chief Justice SA Bobde and Justices BR Gavai and Surya Kant issued notice to the former Bihar chief minister on a petition by the Central Bureau of Investigation against the high court verdict of July 12 last year.

CBI has submitted that the high court at Ranchi had “erroneously” suspended the sentence awarded by the trial court to Yadav and granted him bail on the ground that he had served half of his prison term of three-and-a-half years in Deoghar treasury case.

The case related to fraudulent withdrawal of Rs 89.27 lakh from the treasury between 1991 and 1994 when Yadav was the Bihar Chief Minster.

In December 2017, Yadav was sentenced to seven years in prison by a special CBI court in Ranchi after being convicted for offences under Section 120B read with sections 420,467,468,471,477(A) of the Indian Penal Code and Section 13(i)(c)(d) of the Prevention of Corruption Act.

In its appeal before the apex court, CBI has argued that the high court suspended the sentence against Yadav without any substantial change in circumstances.

The CBI has said Yadav was the main conspirator in the fodder scam cases.

The ageny has submitted that he abused his official position and fraudulently misappropriated government money by withdrawing huge amounts in excess of actual allotments from the District Treasury, Deoghar, on the basis of forged allotment and sub-allotment letters.

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