Clash in Bihar House, 12 hurt

Unruly scenes after RJD members sought CMs resignation

Clash in Bihar House, 12 hurt

The immediate provocation was the demand made by Rashtriya Janata Dal members that Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Kumar Modi should resign immediately following Patna High Court’s order for a CBI probe into the defalcation of Rs 11,412 crore.

In what could be perceived as one of the worst scenes witnessed in the Vidhan Sabha in recent times, a verbal clash ensued soon after the House assembled in the morning. As members got agitated, the duel led to fisticuffs. The situation took a turn for worse when angry members stormed into the well of the House and threw tables and chair on one another.

Members from the ruling campas well as the Opposition were seen writhing in pain as they sustained injuries in head, shoulder, thighs and face. All efforts by Speaker Uday Narain Choudhary to set the House in order went in vain. Even Nitish could not pacify his men, as two of his ministers, Gautam Singh and Giriraj Singh, too, had joined the bedlam. The Opposition, however, blamed the chief minister for instigating his members to indulge in violence.

Vehemently denying the charge, Nitish later told mediapersons that the shameful act was completely undemocratic and avoidable. “The Opposition members were determined not to run the House. So they turned the reporters’ table upside down and threw chairs on the treasury benches,” said Nitish.  “This is an expression of frustrated minds. I am open to discussion on any issue but the opposition is hell-bent upon media-publicity.”

RJD chief whip Ramchandra Purve said Nitish was trying to hush up the Rs 11,412-crore scam “and, therefore, we want him to resign.”

 Purve’s assumption is based on the interlocutory application filed by Chief Secretary Anup Mukherjee in the High Court on Monday in which he had sought a stay on the July 15 order of the HC for a CBI probe into the fraudulent withdrawal. The chief secretary’s petition said the CAG’s report on the expenditure was still under the consideration of the House of the Legislative Assembly and under scrutiny of the Public Accounts Committee (PAC). A CBI probe into the matter at this stage would amount to interference with the proceedings of the state legislature.

It was this appeal which made the opposition feel that the Nitish regime was trying to hush up the matter. It, therefore, became aggressive on Tuesday in demanding Nitish’s resignation.

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