Is it okay to hope that 'jungle raj' will not return to Bihar?

pankaj

Pankaj Kumar | November 20, 2015



The raja is back in Bihar with a new partner. Today, Nitish Kumar was sworn in as the chief minister of Bihar for the fifth time, with Lalu Prasad Yadav and Rahul Gandhi as partners.

After breaking with BJP, Nitish Kumar took on prime minister Narendra Modi with all kinds of accusations like riots of 2002 in Gujarat. And today the irony cannot be lost that Nitish Kumar is keeping company of Lalu Prasad, who has been accused of allowing jungle raj to flourish in Bihar. 

Someone who grew up in Bihar in times when lawlessness was the defining feature of the state rule, I have better reasons to be apprehensive.  All through nineties, insecurity spread by the criminal elements with the patronage of those in power, was everyday reality in Bihar.

In the 15 years Lalu-Rabri rule , lawlessness was institutionalized. Bihar became the metaphor for badland. A whole generation seemed to have lost the plot, became deviant or migrated out of the state.

No one was safe. Murders, rapes and kidnappings were a daily occurrence in the state. The stories like brothers in law of Lalu Prasad competing with each other and showing their access to power by stopping Rajdhani trains or by beating or threatening officers, are now part of the state folklore.

Who can forget notorious criminals like Shahabuddin of Siwan Sunil Pande, Anant Singh, Ramdular Yadav, Pappu Yadav and Anand Mohan.

Brij Bihari singh a minister was killed in the heart of capital while he was getting treatment in the Patna Medical college and murderers were able to flee as if there was no law in the state. Kidnapping had become so common that school going children were always unsafe even in the heart of capital. Mothers used to be restless if children were few minutes late coming to home.

Last night, my fears again shook me, even though I am far away Bihar.  While randomly surfing through the television, I caught up with Nana Patekar and Ajay Devgan in their movie ‘Apaharan’. Patekar plays a role of underworld leader and head of a large kidnapping racket. He is told by his brother that Ajay Shastri, his new recruit ( played by Devgan ) cannot be trusted as he is a son of Gandhian Professor Shastri.

Patekar replies, " ab kaha kisi ka beta raaha (Now he is no more anyone's son).

The subtlety of the repartee by Patekar had a grave irony. It reflected and told the story of a generation that lost on many counts. It told the story of state where one the biggest trade was illegal activity of kidnapping and the biggest aspiration of misguided youth to be part of that business.

I only wonder why we are silent and comfortable in spite of the fact that the man largely responsible for this dark age is back on throne. May be communalism is a more disturbing element than lawlessness. Is that so?

May be Nitish knows how to rein in Lalu Prasad.  I just hope that Bihar of today does not slip into the Bihar of those days which inspired filmmakers to make movies of the badlands. I hope, the two young sons of Lalu Prasad  (Tejaswi and Tej Pratap) will take the politics of Bihar to a new level where focus would be on development. They claim to learn politics since childhood as a legacy but I am hoping that they will prove me wrong and take up the agenda of upliftment of Bihar.

Comments

 

Other News

‘Pandemic added to loneliness, isolation among elderly’

HelpAge India Report 2021, ‘The Silent Tormentor: Covid 19 & the Elderly’, assesses the impact and challenges of the pandemic on lives of elderly living in households (informal settings) and old-age homes (informal settings). It unravels some deep-seated fears of the country’s elderly

“BMC to continue Mumbai Model in future”

To reduce the gap between citizens and authorities BMC will continue its ward war room approach which has now come to be known as the Mumbai Model for addressing health or disaster related issues that may arise in future. Additional Municipal Commissioner (Health, MCGM) Suresh Kakani has sa

Centre increases Kerala`s grant to ensure tap water supply to every home

 The centre government has increased the grant to Kerala under the Jal Jeevan Mission in the year 2021-22 to Rs 1,804.59 Crore, which was Rs 404.24 Crore in 2020-21.  In Kerala, on 15th August 2019, at the time of the launch of J

Smart Enforcement App for Trucks to reduce logistics costs

On average, a truck in India covers 50,000-60,000 km a year, compared to over 300,000 km in advanced nations such as the United States. One of the key reasons is delays due to random stoppages for physical checking of vehicles and verification of documents. 

Drone survey mandatory for all National Highways Projects

The National Highways Authority of India has made mandatory use of drones for monthly video recording of National Highway projects during all stages of development, construction, operation and maintenance. The initiative aims to enhance transparency, uniformity leveraging the l

NCPEDP announces fellowship for sepcially-abled

The National Centre for Promotion of Employment for Disabled People (NCPEDP), a cross-disability advocacy organisation, in collaboration with Azim Premji Foundation, has announce

Visionary Talk with Avinash Pandey, CEO ABP News Network on News Broadcast - Issues & Its Future



Archives

Current Issue

Opinion

Facebook    Twitter    Google Plus    Linkedin    Subscribe Newsletter

Twitter