HC removes restrictions on Bihar chief minister

HC removes restrictions on Bihar chief minister

HC removes restrictions  on Bihar  chief minister

In a relief to Bihar Chief Minister Jitan Ram Manjhi, the Patna High Court on Wednesday vacated the Monday order in which it had restrained him from taking any decision involving financial implications.

Passing the order, the HC bench headed by Chief Justice L Narasimha Reddy said Manjhi was free to take decisions but it would be implemented with effect from February 21. Manjhi is slated to seek confidence vote in the Assembly on February 20.

On Monday, a division bench of Justices Iqbal Ahmed Ansari and Samrendra Pratap Singh had passed an order on a PIL filed by JD(U) legislator Neeraj Kumar in which he had sought a direction from the court to restrain Manjhi from taking policy decisions which would result in financial liability for the state. Emboldened by the HC relief, the chief minister convened a Cabinet meeting on Wednesday evening in which he approved a proposal to hike salary/remuneration of contractual school teachers.

Earlier in the day, Speaker Uday Narayan Choudhary convened an all-party meeting to decide about which party – the BJP or the JD(U) – should be given the status of opposition party and, consequently, the post of Leader of the Opposition.

Taking umbrage over the speaker’s move, the BJP walked out of the meet alleging that the speaker’s office was behaving like the JD(U) office. “We walked out of the meeting as the Speaker’s secretariat was functioning like the JD(U) office and was hell bent on replacing me as Leader of the Opposition,” said senior BJP leader Nand Kishore Yadav.

BJP supports Manjhi
The BJP Legislature Party (BJPLP) meeting was held at the residence of former Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Kumar Modi’s official residence in Patna on Wednesday evening.
Though a formal decision  related to supporting Jitan Ram Manjhi government on the floor of the House was kept in abeyance, sources said most of legislators from the saffron camp were in favour of backing the Mahadalit chief minister.

“A formal announcement on BJP’s stand will be made in the next 24 hours,” said a source in the BJP. Sushil Modi, on the other hand, maintained that he elicited opinion of all the legislators, but a final decision to back Manjhi will be taken on February 19 evening or February 20, the day for floor test.

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