Nitish, Manjhi tiff continues: CM deploys cops to latter's bungalow to prevent him from enjoying fruits
Patna: Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar has deployed two dozen police personnel to 1, Anne Marg, the residence of former CM Jitan Ram Manjhi to guard several trees of mango, litchi and jackfruit planted at latter's bungalow.
Manjhi continues to occupy 1, Anne Marg, designated for the Chief Minister, even after being removed from the chair in February this year. Nitish presently stays at 7 Circular road bungalow.
Policemen deployed on duty at former CM's residence told reporters that they have been instructed to guard the fruits and prevent anybody picking even the fruits that fall on the ground on its own.
"Our duty is to guard these trees. No one can come here," a police officer said.
When Manjhi, who recently launched Hindustani Awam Morcha (HAM), was asked about this, he said many poor visits him at his residence and the latest security arrangements might be aimed at preventing them to take away the fruits.
"Poor people come to meet me here. Nitishji must have thought poor may wish to eat these fruits and hence he made these arrangements here. This matter is related to law and order and I don't want to comment further," the former Bihar CM said.
HAM spokesperson Danish Rizwan, in a statement said, 24 policemen, including 8 sub Inspectors and 16 constables have been deployed especially to guard hundreds of trees of mangoes and litchi fruits.
While highlighting the deterioration in law and order situation across the state, he said, "There are at least 150 trees here. Nitishji is worried about these trees. Girls are being raped daily, crime against women is on rise and he is worried about mango and litchi. The order clear states that these officers are deployed here especially to guard these fruits. The Chief Minister must resign."
The matter also gave an opportunity to Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) and BJP to attack the Nitish government.
RJD vice-president Raghuvansh Prasad Singh said, "Instead of paying attention to improve law and order situation in the state, giving priority to safeguarding mangoes and litchi, was beyond understanding."
The Opposition BJP described this as 'insult' of a dalit. Senior party leader Sushil Kumar Modi said, "It is bizarre that a person occupying a bungalow was deprived of enjoying fruits from trees planted there. This is an insult of a mahadalit by Chief Minister Nitish Kumar."
Manjhi was handpicked by Nitish to succeed him after he stepped down from the CM's post in the wake of JD(U)'s debacle in general election last year. But, he turned a detractor after which he was unceremoniously removed from the post in February this year.