Prohibition hits state’s revenues
Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar’s pet project of total liquor prohibition in the state has been blamed for causing significant loss to the state’s exchequer. According to a report from the Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) for 2016-17, Bihar lost J1,490 crore in revenues in the fiscal year primarily due to l prohibition even as the expenses of the state’s excise department increased.
The Janata Dal (United) stalwart imposed total prohibition on April 2016 and has been waxing eloquent about its socio-economic benefits. The CAG report is now likely to start a fresh debate in Bihar about the prohibition regime.
Spelling errors land babu in soup
An official of the state’s education department has earned the wrath of the teachers’ fraternity because of several spelling and grammar mistakes found in a letter he drafted. The Bihar Secondary School Teachers’ Association (BSSTA) pointed out that at least 35 errors were found in the letter in Hindi sent by Durga Yadav, the education programme officer in Jehanabad district.
Enraged BSSTA general secretary Shatrughan Prasad Singh shot off a letter to the education department’s principal secretary, RK Mahajan, on the issue asking him to take strict action against the erring official. Yadav claims the errors surfaced because his handwritten letter was sent to the schools before it could be typed. “The matter is being probed,” said an official with the department.
Ambulance service disappoints many
The 102 ambulance service run by the Bihar government has left both the general public and authorities disappointed. While six to seven trips a day is the standard average for an ambulance, a recent survey found ambulances in at least 17 districts making fewer trips. The State Health Society has asked civil surgeons and district programme managers of these 17 districts to explain the reasons. The ambulance service in Bihar has been facing problems as drivers and technicians often stop work for not getting their salaries on time.
Tej Pratap springs a ‘political surprise’
Jailed Rashtriya Janata Dal chief Lalu Prasad Yadav’s elder son and MLA Tej Pratap Yadav, is seen by many as a political lightweight. Political pundits keep saying that he is less interested in politics than his younger brother and state Opposition leader Tejashwi Yadav. After filing for divorce from his wife of six months, Tej Pratap dropped off the radar for nearly a month. But he made a surprise appearance at the state Assembly on the last day of the winter session. “He wanted to send a message that he is keenly interested in politics,” said an aide, who was closely linked to the developments.