Jharkhand govt gets tougher against Lalu visitors after allegations of special treatment

Patna

Following reports of large number of party workers from Bihar being allowed to meet RJD president Lalu Prasad at Kelly Bungalow, the place where the leader is lodged in Rajendra Institute of Medical Sciences at Ranchi illegally, the Jharkhand government Friday decided to act tough and prevented entry of outsiders to the bungalow that is converted into a jail for Lalu.

IG of prisons Birendra Bhushan sent a strong message to the deputy commissioner of Ranchi alleging that police officers on security duty at the bungalow were deliberately allowing outsiders to meet Lalu with their bio-data for the coming assembly elections in Bihar.

Bhushan said Lalu was a VIP convicted prisoner. Politcians were coming to meet him daily and issuing political statements from the converted jail. "It is unauthorised and illegal," the IG said and added it was also in violation of the standard operating procedure and guidelines by the Ministry of Home Affairs on lockdown. The deputy commissioner today posted three magistrates at the bungalow and deployed extra force to prevent meeting with the RJD president.

Although Lalu is in jail, the party leaders and prospective candidates from different constituencies are meeting him at Ranchi. They are submitting their bio-data to the jailed party president.

Even senior Congress leaders are meeting him in the jail and discussing seat-sharing for the Bihar assembly elections. Lalu has been authorised by the state unit of the party to select candidates for the assembly elections.

Bihar's deputy chief minister Sushil Kumar Modi said BJP would write to the Election Commission seekings intervention to prevent misuse of the jail facilities by Lalu for political purposes. Lalu has been barred by the commission from contesting any election as he was disqualified following conviction in a series of cases related to the fodder scam.

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