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In tizzy over crime claim

Patna, Nov. 24: Chief minister Nitish Kumar had an uncomfortable task in hand while presenting his government’s annual report card today — defend the state’s law and order in the wake of director-general of police Abhayanand’s reported unhappiness with the condition.

Nitish was caught unawares by an interview of the director-general of police (DGP) that appeared in an English daily, stating that Abhayanand had conceded that the law and order in the state had taken a beating.

The chief minister went on to strongly defend his government’s track record on the law and order front at the function that was attended by the DGP as well.

“I have not seen the DGP’s interview, but there is nothing wrong in the law and order front. Criminals are being caught and convicted in court. There are some persons who try to mislead the people. Everybody saw what happened in Madhubani district. The residents of the district realised the mischievous propaganda unleashed against the government. We know that people will realise the truth every time such false propaganda is launched. There are some persons who do not want the image of the state to improve. That is why I keep on saying that we are going ahead with our work patiently,” Nitish said.

Clarifying his stand, Abhayanand admitted to The Telegraph that there was an increase in murder cases. “But it does not mean that crime has increased. One has to define crime and I am not a layman. There are different forms of crime,” he said.

The chief minister, during the function, also spoke about the steps that his government has taken like scientific police investigation and setting up a separate unit for investigation.

Nitish was seen asking Abhayanand about the interview he had given. The DGP conceded that he had given the interview, but went on to explain his stand.

“It could be seen that the CM was embarrassed by the episode, as it was his big day and he wanted to get it through without any embarrassing moments,” said a JD(U) minister, who recalled that a retired judge had recently criticised Nitish’s regime at a function to release a book written by Abhayanand.

“Luckily, the DGP went on a damage control act by getting his supporters to disassociate themselves with the views of the retired judge,” the minister said. He added that Nitish had even defended Abhayanand’s statement on photographing rioters at the DGPs’ conclave in New Delhi.

Incidentally, in the report card issued by the government on Saturday, a claim has been made on the improvement of law and order in the state. The government said it arrested 1,44,850 people, including 3,236 “notorious criminals”, across the state between January and October. It added that 39 mini gun factories have been busted and 2,081 illegal arms recovered during the period.

The government also claimed to have made substantial recovery of fake currency note, explosives, narcotics and illegal liquor. The report card said the government had set up 147 police buildings, including 36 police stations, during the period and had approved Rs 25 crore for purchase of arms and ammunition for the force. It also pointed out that the home department has started the process of recruitment of constables, junior police officers and jail wardens.


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