Lalu demands Sushil Modi's suspension, probe by CBI into Bhagalpur scam

Rashtriya Janata Dal chief Lalu Prasad Yadav addressing a press confrence at his residence in Patna. | PTI

Rashtriya Janata Dal chief Lalu Prasad Yadav addressing a press confrence at his residence in Patna. | PTI

Mr Yadav said the role of deputy CM Sushil Kumar Modi was under scanner as the scam occurred between 2005-2010 when the NDA was in power in Bihar, and Mr Modi was the finance minister. He should lodge an FIR against Modi and have him arrested.

Sushil Kumar Modi denied having anything to do with the scam. On August 9, a team headed by Inspector-General (IG) (EOU) Jitendra Singh Gangwar flew to Bhagalpur via a special aircraft after Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar raised the issue at a function that was organized to mark the "Earth Day". "As a Finance Minister Modi is responsible for the scam", Lalu Prasad said. "Prime Minister Narendra Modi should take cognizance of the scam and order a CBI probe into it because a state government agency is not reliable to investigate as Sushil Kumar Modi is involved in it", he reiterated. "A CBI probe is imperative as the tentacles of the scam are spread outside the state and even overseas", Prasad said.He also dared CM Nitish Kumar to order a probe by the premier agency to exhibit his commitment towards his "zero tolerance policy on corruption".

Meanwhile, Nitish Kumar has said that the government has been getting reports of such scams from other districts as well and none of these will be tolerated. Yadav also said the unfolding scam could be as big as Rs 1,000 crore and that top government official and politicians were involved in it.

So far, seven people have been arrested - including Prem Kumar, PA of Bhagalpur District Magistrate, on Friday in connection with the scam in the last three days. The initial probe by the SIT and Bhagalpur police revealed that Rs270 crore for land acquisition, Rs17.70 crore for urban development, Rs15 crore of district nazarat besides several crores on other heads kept in the district administration bank accounts were diverted to Srijan for private use, including funding some persons' businesses and land deals in collusion with the government and bank officials.

SIT officials said an FIR was lodged on Tuesday evening at Tilkamanjhi police station in connection with fraudulent withdrawal of Rs 10.26 crore fund of the Mukhyamantri Shahari Vikas Yojana, against board members of Srijan Sahayog Mahila Vikas Samiti, a Sabour-based NGO and officials of the Indian Bank.

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