Politician Lalu Prasad Yadav lost a major case in the Supreme Court today, which ruled that a judge in Ranchi who has handled his trial in a corruption case must deliver his verdict urgently.
Mr Yadav, chief of the Rashtriya Janata Dal or RJD, had said that the judge should be transferred because he is related to a senior minister in the current Bihar government headed by Nitish Kumar. Mr Yadav had said this could impact his case.
Pravas Kumar Singh, the judge in question, has now been ordered by the court to decide whether Mr Yadav is guilty of embezzling Rs 35 crore from the government during his earlier term as chief minister of Bihar.
This case is part of an omnibus that is collectively referred to as "the fodder scam," worth Rs 900 crores according to the CBI. The controversy is centred on whether huge amounts of money were released by the government for fictitious medicines and fodder for cattle. Mr Yadav is named as an accused in five cases.
Bihar has 40 parliamentary seats; a verdict against Mr Yadav could impact his party's performance in the national elections, due by May.