NDA disrupts Bihar Houses again seeking Mastan's ouster, lodges FIR

2 Mar 2017

NDA legislators today continued to disrupt both Houses of the Bihar Legislature protesting against minister Abdul Jalil Mastan for his "uncharitable" remarks against Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
They also met the Governor demanding Mastan's ouster from the government and filed an FIR against the Congress leader. Members of the BJP and its allies in the NDA staged a protest in the Assembly as well as in the Legislative Council for the second consecutive day, seeking an immediate removal of the minister in the Grand Alliance government, forcing an adjournment of both Houses till 2 pm. On February 22, Mastan was caught on camera asking a crowd at Amour in Purnea district to hit the photograph of Modi with shoes. He made the remarks during a protest against the Centre's decision to scrap high-value currency notes.
The video purportedly shows Mastan telling the people to hit the prime minister's photo with shoes. Subsequently, some of the protesters were seen hitting a photo of Modi, kept on the stage, with shoes in Mastan's presence. The video was telecast by television channels on February 28, triggering a protest by the NDA in and outside the Houses since Wednesday. An NDA delegation went to Raj Bhawan and submitted a memorandum to Governor Ramnath Kovind, demanding sacking of Mastan from the post of Bihar Excise and Prohibition Minister.
Leader of Opposition in the Legislative Council Sushil Kumar Modi, his Assembly counterpart Prem Kumar, ex-chief minister and Hindustani Awam Morcha chief Jitan Ram Manjhi, RLSP's Lallan Paswan and others were part of the delegation. "Since chief minister Nitish Kumar did not sack Mastan for his gross unconstitutional conduct, we were forced to approach the Governor for his removal," Sushil told newspersons.
Meanwhile, BJP MLA Nitin Navin lodged an FIR against Mastan at the Kotwali police station. Navin said, in his complaint, he has sought slapping of sedition charges against the minister, his arrest for disturbing communal harmony and also, a probe into his citizenship as he hails from an area bordering Bangladesh. Kotwali SHO Ram Shankar Singh told news agency PTI that he would forward the FIR to Purnea district where Mastan allegedly made the remarks.
The BJP and NDA made it clear that they would accept nothing less than sacking of the minister, while the ruling Grand Alliance leaders including chief minister Nitish Kumar, said the matter is closed after the minister has said sorry. Bihar Congress president and minister Ashok Choudhary told newspersons that "first BJP should take resignation from its MP Subramaniam Swamy for making objectionable comments on Congress President Sonia Gandhi in the past."