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Bihar opposition targets minister for meeting Shahabuddin in jail

111 Days ago

Patna, March 9 (IANS) Amid the opposition's demand for the resignation of a Bihar minister for meeting former MP Mohammad Shahabuddin in jail, Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Wednesday said he had asked the IG (Prisons) to submit a report on the matter.

"I have asked the Inspector General of Prisons to inquire and submit a report soon," Nitish Kumar told the media here.

The opposition Bharatiya Janata Party and its allies created a ruckus on the issue in the assembly and forced Speaker Vijay Kumar Choudhary to adjourn the house. BJP legislators also protested outside the assembly on Wednesday.

Bihar Minority Affairs Minister Abdul Ghafoor, along with ruling Rashtriya Janata Dal legislator Harishankar Yadav, met Shahabuddin in Siwan jail on March 6, and a photo of that meeting has gone viral on social media.

A criminal-turned-politician, Shahabuddin has been convicted in six criminal cases and is facing serious charges in over a dozen other cases. He is serving life sentence in connection with criminal cases, including murder.

Meanwhile, RJD chief Lalu Prasad and his wife Rabri Devi downplayed the meeting and termed it a "normal courtesy meeting".

Their younger son and Deputy Chief Minister Tejaswi Yadav also said there was nothing wrong in meeting Shahabuddin.

On the other hand, the couple's elder son and Health Minister Tej Pratap Yadav said it was wrong for the minister to meet Shahabuddin in jail.

On his part, Ghafoor said there was no violation of any rule during the meeting.

Leader of opposition Prem Kumar has demanded Ghafoor's resignation. "Ghafoor should resign for attending the 'darbar' of Shahabuddin inside the jail. It is a mockery of rule of law in the state," he said.

Senior BJP leader and former deputy chief minister Sushil Kumar Modi also criticised Ghafoor and demanded his resignation. (IANS)

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