The Janata Dal-United, Rashtriya Janata Dal and Congress legislators on Wednesday created ruckus in both Houses of Bihar legislature over recovery of Rs 1.14 crore, $600 and ornaments stolen from the house of Bharatiya Janata Party MP Giriraj Singh and demanded his arrest and termination of Parliament membership alleging it as “black money”.
As the assembly sat for the day, JD-U, RJD and Congress MLAs trooped into the well and demanded stringent action against Singh.
With BJP members also in the well to protest police firing in Rohtas district on Tuesday in which two persons were killed, Speaker Udai Narayan Choudhary adjourned the House till 2 pm when members refused to obey him and return to their seat. Chief Minister Jitan Ram Manjhi was in the House when pandemonium erupted.
Later, the CM said that the state government has taken cognisance of recovery of huge cash, US currency and ornaments stolen from Giriraj Singh’s flat on July 7 and would act according to law.
“Patna police and Income Tax are already probing the source of the wealth recovered. If need arises other forms of inquiry could be ordered,” he said.
Former Chief Minister Nitish Kumar expressed surprise over volume of cash and US currency which was recovered. “The volume is big. It raises question as from where did it come?” Kumar said
He hailed prompt action by Patna police in nabbing the culprits and recovery of stolen items in short time. JD-U legislators sat on dharna at the main entrance of the assembly demanding immediate arrest of Giriraj Singh, BJP MP from Nawada and termination of his membership in the wake of recovery of such a huge amount of cash.
JD(U) MLA Manjit Singh said that it was a challenge for Prime Minister Narendra Modi who made “lofty” speeches on black money during poll campaign to act against his party MP harbouring ill gotten wealth.
Singh and his party colleague Dawood Ali demanded the state government to act under provisions of anti-corruption laws against the BJP MP, confiscate his properties and convert it into school for poor as has been its policy.
Similar scenes were observed in the legislative council where JD(U) members created ruckus over Giriraj Singh issue. Police had recovered the stolen items from the BJP MP’s flat with the arrest of four persons on Tuesday. Former Chief Minister and RJD leader Rabri Devi expressed surprise over recovery of cash stolen from Singh’s house and sought proper inquiry into its source.
Told that the MP was claiming that the recovered items were of his cousin, she said, “It’s an excuse as the money seems to have been earned by him as minister of Animal Husbandry during NDA rule.”
But, BJP described it as “non-issue” and assailed the ruling party for disrupting both the Houses over the matter. “State government has all the power to probe such a matter so why its members are disrupting proceedings of the two Houses?” said leader of opposition in legislative council Sushil Kumar Modi.
Image: Janata Dal-United members protest outside the Patna assembly. Photograph: ANI/Twitter