PATNA: Union minister and firebrand BJP leader Giriraj Singh on Saturday targeted Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar after visiting a jail in his parliamentary constituency of Nawada to meet some Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) and Bajrang Dal leaders lodged there.
Singh, who is known for aggressively advocating the need to protect the rights of Hindus, met Bajrang Dal’s Nawada district coordinator Jitendra Pratap alias Jitujee and VHP’s district secretary Kailash Vishwakarma, who were arrested four days ago for their alleged role in the communal clashes in Nawada last year. He also met other VHP and Bajrang Dal functionaries lodged in the jail after their arrest following a communal flare-up in Nawada in March.
“These leaders and functionaries have been arrested and jailed on the basis of false allegations. This is a very unfortunate situation. While the government should work at improving communal amity, arresting innocent people from the majority community would only enrage them further,” said the minister to reporters after emerging from the jail.
Defending the arrested VHP and Bajrang Dal leaders, Singh said that they were arrested even though they were trying to restore peace during the communal tensions in Nawada.
“Such action by the state government will only provoke the Hindu community. Does the government think that communal harmony will prevail in the state only if the Hindus are suppressed and humiliated?” he asked without naming CM Nitish Kumar.
BJP, which is a major ally of Bihar’s NDA government, has been unhappy over the arrest of scores of workers and leaders of Sangh Parivar organisations in the wake of the communal tensions that arose in eight districts of the state in March and April this year.
Six Bajrang Dal activists were arrested in Nawada on July 4 while trying to enforce a bandh in protest against the arrest of two leaders of the Sangh Parivar outfits in connection with the communal flare-up in the town in April 2017.
“May it be the communal tensions last year or the incidents after an idol was vandalised earlier this year, the administration has acted in a one-sided manner and targeted the Hindus. Such action cannot be tolerated,” said Singh.