A day after his claims that a temple in Bihar's Madhubani district was washed and purified soon after his visit there for obeisance, Chief Minister Jitan Ram Manjhi today ordered a probe.
Strict action will be taken if anybody is found guilty, the CM warned even as the temple priest stoutly denied allegation in this regard.
Majhi told reporters after presiding over 'Udyami Panchayat', that the Darbhanga Divisional Commissioner and Inspector General of Police (IG), Darbhanga zone, will jointly probe whether idols and premises of Parmeshwari Devi temple located in Anradhari village were washed and purified soon after his visit there for obeisance a few month ago.
On reminded that the Mines and Geology Minister Ramlashan Ram Raman and JD(U) MLC Vinod Kumar Singh have denied that the temple was cleaned after the chief minister's visit, Manjhi said he was not in the habit of speaking lies in public.
Raman had narrated the incident to him not once, but twice after which he chose to go public to highlight bias against dalits in civil society, the chief minister said.
Though the minister now denied having said so, an ex-MP Devendra Yadav who represented Madhubani lok sabha seat had called him from New Delhi to inform that the temple was washed within half-an-hour of his visit nearly three months ago, Manjhi said.
Manjhi said he had kept quiet then and decided against raising the issue since Bihar was going through by-poll in ten assembly seats. But now has gone public after Raman reminded about it on a couple of occasions in recent past, the CM claimed.
Temple priest Ashok Kumar Mishra, however, refuted the Chief Minister's charge saying that the temple premise was not washed and purified soon after the latter's visit, but it was done so in the evening as per routine.
"The temple premises are washed twice a day - morning and evening - everyday as per routine being practised for decades," Mishra told PTI.