RJD chief Lalu Prasad on Tuesday took upon himself to do some mentoring, despite having no obvious role in government, advising actual home minister and chief minister, Nitish Kumar to deal sternly with criminals, who were out to divert the government’s focus from ushering in promised development.
Calling an impromptu press conference at his residence in Patna in the wake of killings of an engineer associated with a road construction firm in Vaishali, Prasad said the killers were the same set of criminals who had posed a serious challenge to his government before 2005. He did not wish to answer to queries whether he was speaking in an official capacity or chief of a party in alliance and in government.
“I request the CM to take all steps, including taking notorious gangsters languishing in jail on remand and replacing the lax officers with proactive ones, to smash the crime racket and drive the criminals out,” said the RJD leader.
Regarding the murder of engineers in Darbhanga last Saturday, Prasad said he had urged the CM and the construction company to pay appropriate compensation to the family of the deceased.
The RJD president said, “Santosh Jha’s gang is active in Sitamarhi and Mithila region, and is involved in threatening officials of private companies, abduction, extortion and murders. They take shelter in neighbouring Nepal after committing a crime. Jha is presently lodged in jail.”
Referring to the measures stipulated for the police personnel by the chief minister during his meeting on the law and order issue, Prasad urged Kumar to give the police a free hand for effective control of crime.
“The morale of the police personnel, which took a beating during the stint of a former director general of police (DGP) in the aftermath of killing of the Ranveer Sena supremo, needed to be boosted again. Responsibilities of officers from SP to SHO (station house officers) should be fixed for any crime taking place in their jurisdiction, and those found guilty must be taken to task,” he emphasised.
Asserting that the grand alliance government is committed to provide complete protection to the people in the state, the RJD leader asked the chief minister to order the district magistrates (DMs) and the superintendent of police (SPs) to spend nights in rural areas to thwart the criminals’ from hampering development activities.
Lambasting the BJP leaders for raking up the jungle raj issue, Prasad asked them to stay away from taking political mileage out of plight of the people.
“They (BJP leaders) have no point in tarnishing the image of Bihar even as neighbouring Jharkhand, which is being ruled by them, is under siege of criminals who have migrated from Bihar. They should better help the government control the upsurge in crime activities,” said Prasad.