New Delhi : The Janata Dal-United (JD-U) has formed a three-member team to investigate whether it were “police excesses” or threats from the outlawed Maoists that forced a number of its members in Bihar to quit the party.
“A few days ago, 64 members of the party from the Imamganj assembly constituency in Gaya district of Bihar resigned en masse. While those who have resigned are saying that they did so due to police excesses, we are told that threats from CPI-Maoists (Communist Party of India-Maoists) could be the reason,” JD-U spokesperson Shambhu Srivastava told IANS.
“A three-member committee has been formed by party president Sharad Yadav to investigate the matter. While an inspector-general of police has been ordered to investigate whether there were any police excesses, our team will find out if the Maoist threat was the reason,” Srivastava said.
The committee will be headed by Ram Jivan Singh, a former Bihar minister. The other members are Saroj Bachan Nayak, a legislator from Madhya Pradesh, and Jeetmal Khat, a legislator from Rajasthan.
“The CPI-Maoists are strong in the area and this could be a reason. Our team will find out the truth once it visits the area,” Srivastava said.
The resignations came as a shock to the party leadership in Delhi. “This came as a bolt from the blue,” a party leader confessed. Yadav is away in Karnataka to campaign for the forthcoming assembly elections there.
The party has ruled out rebellion or overtures from any other political outfit as the cause. “Those who have resigned have not joined any political outfit,” Srivastava said.
Gaya in central Bihar has a strong Maoist presence and has faced radical leftwing violence in the recent past.