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Patna: RJD chief and former Railways Minister Lalu Prasad on October 5, 2017, appeared before the CBI at its headquarters in Delhi for questioning in land for hotel scam. Lalu appeared before the CBI after repeated summons. He reached the CBI headquarters around 10.40 am on October 5 and was quizzed for almost seven hours. He was given vegetariad food during lunch and also tea few times.
Lalu was quizzed in connection with award of maintenance contract of two railways hotels at Ranchi and Puri to the owners of a Patna hotel Vinay Kochar and Vijay Kochar, who are also accused in the case. The Ranchi and Puri hotels were first transferred to the IRCTC and then to the owners of the Patna hotel in 2006 when Lalu was Railways Minister.
His younger son and former Bihar Deputy CM Tejwasi Yadav will appear before the investigating agency on October 6 in the same case. The CBI had on July 5, 2017, registered a case against Lalu, his wife and former Bihar CM Rabri Devi, Tejaswi and several others in connection with land for hotel scam.
The CBI had registered a case u/s 120B r/w 420 of IPC and Section 13(2) r/w 13(1)(d) of PC Act, 1988, against Lalu, Rabri, Tejaswi, a private person based in New Delhi, two Directors of a private Hotel Ltd. Company, a private Projects/Marketing company based in Delhi, the then MD, IRCTC and unknown others on the allegations of awarding the tender for development, maintenance and operation of BNR Hotels at Ranchi and Puri to said private Hotel Ltd. Company in 2006.
The CBI had registered the case consequent to a Preliminary Enquiry which prima facie revealed that then Railway Minister Prasad had allegedly derived undue advantage by abuse of his official position & by way of sale of about 3 acres of land at Patna by the owners of said private Hotel Ltd Company to another private marketing company having a private person ( wife of his close associate), as its Director, at a price which was less than the prevalent circle rate. It was also alleged that this favour was returned to the company by award of long term lease for the BNR hotels at Ranchi and Puri by manipulating the tender process..
It was further alleged that as per available records, the entire shareholding of said private marketing company was transferred to wife of then Railway Minister and his son between 2010-14, for a consideration of approx Rs 64 lakh, when this company owned land was worth around Rs 32.5 crore ( as per circle rate) and around Rs 94 crore (as per the market rate). The CBI had also carried out search operations at 12 places includin Patna, Delhi, Ranchi, Puri and Gurugram on July 7, 2017. The CBI had also quizzed Rabri and Tejwasi on July 7. Lalu said that he would be co-operating withe CBI in its investigation into the case.