In Raids On Lalu Yadav, His Party Sees A Link To A Political Shift

Weeks after he was granted bail in a fodder scam case, Lalu Prasad Yadav was accused in a fresh corruption case over alleged irregularities in recruitment between 2004 and 2009 when he was Railway Minister.

In Raids On Lalu Yadav, His Party Sees A Link To A Political Shift

Lalu Yadav's home was raided by the CBI on Friday. (File)

Patna:

The latest Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) raids on Bihar politician Lalu Yadav may have been linked to allegations of a jobs scam, but some members of his party, the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD), see another connection.

Raising questions over the timing of the raids, RJD insiders have claimed they were linked to the caste-based census that has made the BJP - which rules at the centre and controls the CBI - increasingly uneasy because of the growing bonhomie between their ally Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and Lalu Yadav's son Tejashwi Yadav, leader of the opposition.

The last time the two parties came together, they had trounced the BJP in the 2015 Bihar elections before Nitish Kumar ended the relationship over corruption charges against the Yadavs and went back to his old ally in 2017.

But since the 2020 elections, when Nitish Kumar's Janata Dal (United) emerged as the junior partner, the Chief Minister has been reportedly unhappy with his ties with the BJP. In the call for a caste-based census, his views have lined up far more with the RJD than the BJP because the exercise finds favour among the voters of the two local parties.

As CBI officers waited for an hour and a half at Lalu Yadav's wife Rabri Devi's residence this morning for their lawyers, they had to deal with aggressive RJD workers and leaders who kept accusing them of political vendetta.

"We're not surprised but sad that the way agencies are being misused," RJD spokesperson Manoj Jha said.

Nitish Kumar's party, however, was quick to refute the allegations that the raids at 16 places were linked to any kind of alignment with Tejashwi Yadav over the caste census.

"It's wrong to link the raids with the caste-based census. The case is based on its own merit," Bihar minister Ashok Chaudhary said.

Weeks after he was granted bail in a fodder scam case, Lalu Prasad Yadav was accused in a fresh corruption case over alleged irregularities in recruitment between 2004 and 2009 when he was Railway Minister.

Besides Mr Yadav, his wife and former Bihar Chief Minister Rabri Devi, daughter and Rajya Sabha MP Misa Bharti and other family members have been named accused in the new case, sources said.

The CBI has alleged that Mr Yadav and his family members received land and properties as a bribe for giving out railway jobs.

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