| One of the idols at Ranipur in Patna City that was not allegedly immersed by October 15. Picture by Sachin |
Police have booked 14 members of various puja committees in Patna City area for violating administrative order to immerse idols by October 15.
Two complaints were lodged with the Mehadiganj and Khajekalan police stations under the Patna City sub-division on Saturday on the statement of a magistrate, Shailendra Kumar, who was deployed to maintain law and order in the area.
While 10 people have been made accused in the FIR lodged with the Mehadiganj police station, four others have been booked in another FIR lodged with the Khajekalan police station. The station house officers of the two police stations, Prem Sagar (Khajekalan) and Vinay Kumar (Mehadiganj), confirmed the incident.
The magistrate alleged that the accused failed to adhere to the order issued by the district administration to immerse Durga idols within the stipulated period and delayed the process causing inconvenience to the residents.
“The traffic on the roads remained disrupted as the idols could not be removed within the stipulated time. Moreover, the processions were taken out late in the night in gross violation of the Bihar Control of the Use and Play of Loudspeakers Act, 1955,” Shailendra stated in the complaints.
Patna senior superintendent of police Manu Maharaj said the accused have been booked under Sections 153 (A) (promoting social hatred), 188 (disobedience to order promulgated by public servant and 34 (common intension) of the IPC besides relevant sections of Bihar Control of the Use and Play of Loudspeakers Act.
Maharaj said the accused would be arrested if the allegations against them were proved to be true.
Prem Sagar said the organisers took out the idol immersion procession on October 16 instead of October 15.
The members of the puja committees threatened to launch an agitation if the cases against the accused were not withdrawn by Monday. Alok Sah, a member of the Kalikala Mandir Navyuvak Sangh (Ranipur), said the idols could not be immersed owing to rain on October 14.
The Durga idol at Balua Chowk was finally immersed near Raghunathpur bridge on the Motihari-Areraj road on Saturday evening after the organisers failed to do so on Tuesday. Members of the Puja committee could not lift the idol to immerse it on Tuesday.
East Champaran superintendent of police Vinay Kumar was also present at the spot where more than 50,000 people thronged to catch a glimpse of the idol.