Published on: 14 July 2023 at 12:00 IST
A Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader, who served as the Jehanabad district general secretary, has reportedly passed away after sustaining injuries in a forceful police lathi charge during a protest in Patna.
The BJP organized a large-scale demonstration against the alleged corruption carried out by the Nitish Kumar-led state government, prompting the police to employ tear gas shells, water cannons, and resort to a lathi charge to disperse the party workers.
Sushil Kumar Modi, BJP MP and former Bihar deputy chief minister, claimed that the leader’s demise was a result of injuries inflicted during the “brutal” police action. However, authorities at the Patna Medical College Hospital stated that no external injuries were found on the body. The police asserted that the lathi charge and other measures were necessary due to the protesters pelting stones and throwing red chili powder at them.
The incident has led to further political tensions, with Union Minister of State for Home Affairs Nityanand Rai condemning the police action and calling for the government’s resignation.
Several BJP members, including MPs, MLAs, and workers, have reportedly sustained injuries and are receiving treatment in various hospitals.
The BJP protest focused on corruption issues and the removal of the domicile requirement for teacher recruitment.
This incident adds to the BJP’s allegations of corruption, especially after Tejashwi Yadav, a prominent leader of the opposition Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD), was named in a CBI chargesheet related to a land-for-jobs scam.
The rivalry between the BJP and Nitish Kumar, who severed ties with the BJP and formed a government with the RJD and Congress, has been ongoing.