BJP slams Nitish govt over Lohia statue cleaning incident

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Patna/Supual, Apr 7: Opposition BJP today slammed Nitish Kumar government for not initiating stern action in respect to the washing of socialist leader Ram Manohar Lohia's statue after former Bihar Chief Minister Jitan Ram Manjhi had garlanded it.

Read more: Caste politics in Bihar: Lohia's statue 'purified' by JDU workers after Jitan Manjhi touches it

Leader of Opposition Nand Kishore Yadav raised the issue in the Assembly and accused the government of not initiating stern action due to its hostility towards Manjhi. Soon, BJP members trooped into the well of the House and shouted anti-government slogans.

Lohia statue: BJP slams Nitish govt

"The Sunday incident of cleaning of Lohia statue is a serious crime in the rule of 'sushasan' (good governance)," Yadav said. Members of RJD's student wing and Lohia Vichar Manch had cleaned the statue with water after Manjhi garlanded it in Supual district on Sunday evening while on his way to Saharsa in connection with a political programme.

They had removed the garland placed by Manjhi and then placed another garland statue. Yadav alleged that since RJD of Lalu Prasad was supporting the JD(U) government, it was not initiating action and trying to hush up the matter by merely doing formalities in the incident.

He also said that since Manjhi had challenged Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, the government was trying to "give the incident a decent burial".

The government has not come out with a statement on the matter which is a 'serious issue', Yadav said and demanded stringent action against the accused. Meanwhile, Superintendent of Police of Supual Pankaj Kumar Raj told PTI today that three persons allegedly involved in the incident were still absconding and hectic search was on for them.

Police had yesterday arrested one member of RJD's student wing in connection with the incident. Altogether, four persons have been named as accused on the basis of report of a magistrate.

An FIR has been lodged against them with Supual town police station on the basis of the magistrate's statement. Reacting to the incident, Manjhi had yesterday described the incident as painful but had said he would not lodge any complaint in the incident.

PTI 

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