Giridih, Sept. 15: What begun as a dharna in front of the collectorate today, snowballed into a power battle between Giridih’s political parties and business community, on one hand, and government officials on the other.
The dharna to protest against the lack of proper security here was attended by workers and leaders of BJP, JMM, RJD, JVM(P) and members of IMA, Bar Council and business owners. It was led by officials of chamber of commerce.
The dharna began with agitators blocking the collectorate main gate and preventing staff from entering offices. Not satisfied with the picket alone, protesters asked additional collector Gosain Uraon to stop work and demanded that both deputy commissioner Vandana Dadel and superintendent of police A.V. Minz be transferred. The four-hour dharna was scheduled to end at 1pm.
Efforts to calm agitators failed as words of circle officer Prabhakar Singh and sub-divisional magistrate Iqbal Alam Ansari fell to deaf ears. When informed of the ruckus, Dadel, who was busy at her residence office meeting visitors, forcibly opened the collectorate gate and entered her office at 12 noon.
“I sympathise with families that have faced robberies. But, protests should be conducted in a democratic manner, without hampering administrative work,” said Dadel to The Telegraph.
Meanwhile, chamber president Gunwant Singh and former minister Chandra Mohan Prasad held a news conference later in the evening, where they said a memorandum would be sent to the governor and a complaint would be lodged against the DC who, they alleged, should have listened to them instead of “storming into her office”.
Not to be outdone, the administration has lodged an FIR against chamber president Gunwarnt Singh, former minister Chandra Mohan Prasad, former Giridih MLA Jyotinder Prasad and Nunulal Marandi, present at the protest. Forty-six others have also been named in the FIR lodged under Sections 147, 342, 504 and 353 of the IPC and Articles 3 and 4 of the Defamation Of Property Act.
Compared to the administration, Giridih’s business class has always enjoyed an upper hand in the state of affairs.