MLA murder: Killer battles for life, Nitish orders probe
Rupam Pathak, the school teacher who stabbed to death Bihar's Bharatiya Janata Party legislator Raj Kishore Keshari at his residence in Purnia on Tuesday morning, has been admitted at the Katihar Hospital in a critical condition, after she was badly beaten up by the member of legislative assembly's security guards and supporters.
Last year, Pathak had accused Keshari of sexual harassment.
"The police are yet to record her statement as her condition is still critical," said Additional director General of Police P K Thakur.
"Mujhe phansi de do, main jeena nahin chahti (Give me the death sentence, I don't want to live)," Pathak reportedly told journalists while she was being shifted to Katihar.
Pathak went on to add, "Woh log power mein hain, kutch bhi kah ya kar sakte hain, (They are in power. They can say or do anything)."
According to police sources in Purnia, "Her family members and relatives are reluctant to say anything. They are hiding at a safe place after the incident."
The Purnia district administration has tightened security in the town following the incident. "Additional security forces have been deployed in Purnia town," official sources said.
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Reportage: M I Khan
Image: Rupam Pathak
'She hid a sharp dagger under her shawl'
One of Keshari's employees, on condition of anonymity, told rediff.com over the telephone that Pathak had met the MLA on Tuesday morning and requested that she needed to talk to him separately.
"Rupam Pathak had covered her body with a woolen shawl, under which she hid a sharp dagger. She used the dagger to stab Keshari while he was talking to her," he told rediff.com.
The 51-year-old Keshari, a four-time MLA, was meeting residents of his constituency at his Sipahi Tola residence in Purnea when the incident took place.
The profusely bleeding MLA was rushed to a nearby hospital, where he succumbed to his injuries.
Visitors assembled at the MLA's residence caught hold of Pathak and thrashed her up before handing her over to the police.
Six months ago, Pathak had lodged a complaint of sexual harassment against the MLA from Purnia. In her complaint, Pathak alleged that Keshari and his men had raped her over a three-year period.
Chief Minister Nitish Kumar has directed the director general of police to thoroughly review the security arrangements of all legislators. He also ordered the DGP to constitute a high-level team to probe the incident.
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Image: Raj Kishore Keshari
'We have lost a dedicated soldier of BJP'
Kumar also asked Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Kumar Modi to rush to the spot. Keshari's cremation would take place with full state honours.
The chief minister also appealed to the people and supporters of Kesahri in Purnia to maintain law and order, as the guilty would soon be brought to justice.
State BJP president C P Thakur condemned the killing of Keshari and said the case must be probed thoroughly.
He said, "In his (Keshari's) death, we have lost a young and dedicated soldier of the BJP. We pray to God to give enough strength to Keshari's family and followers to tide over the grief."
Image: Keshari's residence at Purnea