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Last Updated: Tuesday, 13 February 2007, 14:31 GMT
Rail minister in-laws in fare row
Laloo Prasad Yadav
Mr Yadav is one of India's most colourful politicians
The parents-in-law of the Indian Railways Minister, Laloo Prasad Yadav, have been caught travelling on a train in the state of Bihar without tickets.

The couple - both in their seventies - told an inspector checking tickets in their first-class carriage that they "never travelled with tickets".

They were travelling from Hajipur in Bihar to the town of Siwan.

Railway staff tried to eject them from the train after the ticket inspection, but the couple refused to be removed.

Corruption allegations

The BBC's Alok Kumar who witnessed the incident said that the elderly couple appeared confused about the need to have tickets.

Train in India
India has a well developed train network

Our correspondent says that they repeatedly pointed out to the ticket inspector from East Central Railways that they had been put on the train personally by the station master at Hajipur.

They said that there was "no need" for them to carry tickets.

Shiv Prasad Choudhary and his wife are the parents of former Bihar Chief Minister Rabri Devi, who is the wife of Mr Prasad.

Mr Prasad was instrumental in getting his wife the chief minister's position after he was banned from holding the post because of corruption allegations.

Correspondents say that it is unclear what punishment - if any - the couple will face for the incident, which will be an embarrassment for Mr Yadav.

However railway sources said they will be fined in accordance with the rules and issued with "retrospective tickets" in order to legalise their journey.

Laloo Prasad Yadav is one of India's most colourful politicians. He leads an influential regional party in Bihar that is allied with the Congress Party in India's national parliament.





SEE ALSO
Graft charge for Indian minister
17 May 05 |  South Asia
The lord of Bihar
30 Apr 04 |  South Asia
Profile: Laloo Prasad Yadav
22 Mar 04 |  South Asia
Bihar politician back in jail
21 Dec 01 |  South Asia
Laloo Prasad sent to jail
26 Nov 01 |  South Asia
Laloo Prasad taken into custody
05 Apr 00 |  South Asia

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