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Activists court arrest over corruption
- CPI(ML) workers demand Prime Minister’s ouster

Patna, Aug. 9: Terming the Union government’s Lokpal Bill a total farce, more than 500 CPI(ML) activists from Bihar braved the continuous downpour and took out a protest march from Gandhi Maidan today.

Led by state party general secretary Deepankar Bhattacharya and other leaders, the activists marched 2km from Gandhi Maidan to Kotwali police station where they courted arrest as part of their Jail Bharo Andolan.

Alleging that the UPA government had cheated the people, Bhattacharya demanded the resignation of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Union home minister P. Chidambaram.

The general secretary also criticised the Union government for keeping the Prime Minister and the higher judiciary from the Lokpal’s ambit. He said the government’s Lokpal bill would not be able to check corruption, as there is no provision to punish corrupt people involved in looting foodgrain from PDS at the grassroots level.

Coming down on the Prime Minister over the various scams unearthed during his tenure, Bhattacharya said: “It is high time that the Prime Minister and the Union home minister resign from their posts taking moral responsibility, as former telecom minister A. Raja has taken their names in the spectrum controversy.”

The CPI(ML) is organising a nationwide anti-corruption drive under which several demonstrations have been planned in major towns of Bihar. The Jail Bharo Andolan of the CPI(ML) is not confined to the “toothless” Lokpal bill or the spectrum scam. The party has also decided to attack the Bihar government over the Biada scam, irregularities in AC/DC bills and Forbesganj police firing.

The party general secretary attacked the Nitish Kumar-led NDA government for failing on all fronts and condemned June 3 Forbesganj police firing and demanded the chief minister’s resignation and a CBI probe initiated into the firing.

“We also demand a CBI probe in the Biada land scam, as the state government has distributed government land to kin of politicians and bureaucrats fooling the common people,” said Bhattacharya.

Sudama Rai, a party cadre who came from Bhojpur, told The Telegraph: “The downpour could not deter our determination to fight against corruption, as it is a big issue for us.”

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