Patna: Over one dozen killings reported within 24 hours in Bihar has again exposed the serious lack of law and order in the state. This is not the first time that such numbers of killing have been reported this year. Killing of half a dozen to nearly one dozen have been reported several times within 24 hours in the last few months.
This latest figure of killings of 13 people including two businessman, two farmers, a Janata Dal (United) [JD-U] leader and a transgender in the state on November 4 and 5 clearly indicates a spurt in criminal incidents in the state. It also contradicts the repeated claims of rule of law and sushashan (good governance) by the Nitish Kumar led NDA government.
Opposition leaders have attacked Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and termed these incidents of crime as an example of real jungle raj (unruly governance).
The spurt in criminal incidents is marked by murders, rape, extortion, kidnapping for ransom, loot, robbery and chain snatching, as per the reports in the local dailies in the last few months.
Angry over the rising crime graph, people took to streets at different places on Tuesday and Wednesday to protest against the killings. They have blocked roads, burnt tyres and raised slogans against the government.
Also read: CM Nitish Kumar Draws Flak for Deteriorating Rule of Law in Bihar
On Wednesday morning, unknown assailants have shot dead a garment businessman in Jamui district and a farmer in Motihari in East Champaran district. While on Tuesday, nine people were killed including two businessmen in West Champaran and Patna, a JD-U leader in Saharsa district, a transgender in Purnia district and three people were killed in a gangwar in Begusarai district and one each in Vaishali and Araria districts. These killings have created panic as well as anger among residents.
Hundreds of people in Patna, Bettiah in West Champaran, Purnea and Saharsa staged protests. In Saharsa, following the killing of JD-U leader Vinod Bhagat, his supporters along with residents, blocked roads and forcibly shut down Patori Bazar. In Bettiah, following the killing of fish trader Munna Shah, angry people protested in the hospital, attacked police and set ablaze a police vehicle. Similarly in Purnea, a group of transgenders along with other residents protested against the killing of a transgender.
All these incidents have cast a shadow on the once much-hyped governance and rule of law of Nitish Kumar. It should be noted that Kumar along with their ally, BJP, had promised of a crime-free Bihar after terming the 15 years’ rule of Lalu Yadav-Rabri Devi as jungle raj for the prevailing lawlessness and high rate of crimes.
Opposition leader in the state Assembly, Tejashwi Yadav, said, “Nitush Kumar has a habit to refute the reported crimes and also dismiss the data and figures of crimes in the state. The CM actually protects the liquor mafias and shields corrupt officials. Citizens losing lives to various crimes including murder, robbery and loot have become common these days.”
He further said that Kumar is losing the image of sushashan babu (one who implement rule of law), which he had so carefully crafted over a decade ago. “Unlike government’s claims, the perception is that there is no law and order in the state. Lawlessness still haunts the people. Helpless citizens are losing lives to crimes. But make no mistake. This is Nitish Ji's media-managed Jungleraj, Kushasan (bad governance),” Tejashwi said.
According to the latest National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) data for 2017, Bihar has earned the dubious distinction of recording the second highest number of dowry deaths and murders in the country after Uttar Pradesh.
As per NCRB, Bihar tops with 22.5% of the communal riot cases registered nationwide in 2017. As per the report, about 214 people were affected in altogether 163 cases of communal riots registered in Bihar in 2017 against overall 723 cases with 1,092 victims across the country that year. It is more shocking when compared to the figures of 2016 when Bihar ranked third (139 cases, 165 victims) in communal riot cases and fourth (79 cases, 146 victims) in 2015.