"Thank you very much Nitish Kumar," tweeted Tejaswi Yadav after a special CBI court on Saturday sentenced RJD chief Lalu to three-and-a-half years in jail and imposed a fine of Rs 10 lakh on him in the fodder scam case.

The scam is related to fraudulent withdrawal of Rs 89.27 lakh from the Deoghar Treasury 21 years ago.

The 69-year-old leader and his son have maintained that the conviction was a case of "political vendetta".

Addressing a press conference in Patna, Lalu's son Tejaswi on Saturday lashed out at Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and his ally BJP saying the party would go to the people after makarsankranti to make them aware of the "conspiracy" hatched by Kumar and the BJP against the RJD chief.

"Lalu is paying the price for his uncompromising stance against the BJP. Had he compromised, his detractors would have been comparing him to Raja Harishchandra," the former Deputy CM of Bihar said.

"The more we are harassed, the stronger will be the public support in our favour. Lalu resides in the people's hearts," he said

"He is in jail, yet everybody is being talking about him. The only reason is that the people of Bihar are with us and this scares our opponents."

He also took potshots at the Bihar's ruling JD(U)-BJP combine, saying, "Let the double engine do something for the betterment of Bihar. They should set their own house in order instead of wasting their energy on the future of RJD."

After the verdict, BJP and its ally JD(U) had said that no one was above law.

"The court has done its job, and this is a message that if anyone robs the country of its wealth, however important,then the law is equal for all. This is justice for the people of Bihar because it was their money that was looted," BJP leader Shahnawaz Hussain said.

Janata Dal (United) Secretary General KC Tyagi said a new political chapter has begun with the court's decision and it means politicians will be afraid of committing any such wrongdoing.

Agencies