Court orders action against politicians for militia links


Patna : The Patna High Court Monday directed the Bihar government to take action against those politicians who were found to be linked with the banned Ranbir Sena, a private militia of landed upper caste Bhumihars.

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The court order is likely to create a political storm in the state as several members of the ruling Janata Dal-United (JD-U) and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) combine including Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Kumar Modi were named in a report by an investigation commission headed by Justice Amir Das.

The court order came during a hearing of a public suit by Ramji Prasad, which demanded making public the findings of the commission.

"The court has directed the state government to take action as soon as possible against all the politicians named for their links with Ranbir Sena by the commission," M.P. Gupta, the lawyer of the petitioner, told IANS.

The order is a major setback for the 20-month-old government that had wound up the commission early last year.

The court took a serious note of the commission's report naming 37 politicians as supporters of the Ranbir Sena.

"The court directed the state government to act on the basis of statements of 354 witness recorded by the commission during the inquiry and other relevant documents related with political links of Ranbir Sena," Gupta said.

The commission was set up in 1997 after 59 Dalits were killed in Laxmanpur-Bathe in Jehanabad district in one of the worst caste massacres in the state.