Ranchi, Oct. 29: Jharkhand High Court today granted bail to former agriculture minister and JMM MLA Nalin Soren, a prime accused in the Rs 26 crore seed scam.
Pleading respite for his client, Sorenís advocate Mithilesh Singh said the former minister, who had been in custody since July this year, would not interfere in the investigation or influence witnesses if he was released on bail.
Singh also said Sorenís role in the scam was unclear and investigations had not revealed any kickbacks that he might have received.
Soren headed the agriculture department during the Madhu Koda regime between 2006 and 2007. During his tenure, Soren had allegedly connived with department officials, embezzling public money.
Apart from Soren, several other officials are facing charges of irregularities in the purchase of seeds and agricultural equipment in the case.
The state vigilance bureau, which is investigating the case, filed the FIR in 2009.
Investigations have revealed that the state government had procured substandard and inferior quality of seeds for distributing among farmers. Further, the government had purchased the seeds without any tender.
Anomalies committed in implementation of different schemes launched for the benefits of farmers also came to light in the course of the probe.