AICC General Secretary Rahul Gandhi visited Forbesganj in Araria district of Bihar today afternoon. Rahul Gandhi visited the houses of victims and met their families. He assured them justice.
He asked State Congress president Choudhary Mehboob Ali Kaiser to bring the injured boy Md. Rashid Ansari to New Delhi for treatment.
The gruesome incident took place as the locals were protesting construction of a starch factory in the area on the government acquired land. The upcoming factory had raised a wall which blocked only approach road of the village Bhajanpur to outside world. To register their protest the locals on Jun3 assembled at the place where the wall was being raised. During the demonstration police without warning opened the fire on the villagers. As a result 4 members of a minority community were killed and 30 others injured including a 6-month-old infant and a pregnant woman.
The state authorities claimed that the villagers were forcibly demolishing the wall. BJP politician Sushil Kumar Modi had earlier visited the area to lend support to a colleague BJP leader connected with upcoming factory.
A video showed a police man jumping over the head a protestor. The policeman was later arrested and charged with murder. In other case when a dead body was received for post mortem, it was found that the man was still alive.
Last week Congress president Sonia Gandhi had sent a team of party leaders to console and offer relief amount among the victims. The party has given Rs 1 lakh each to the family of the deceased and Rs 25000 each to the injured. The Congress Party is continuously demanding CBI probe into the firing.
Realizing police highhandedness in the case, CM Nitish ordered a judicial probe but surprising many he neither suspended any police officer nor did announce compensation for the victims.
Families of the dead victims visited Delhi and met the national press on Saturday 18 June. Shabnam Hashmi of Anhad – non governmental organisation – accompanied them. A video played at the Press Meet showed Bihar police committing unjustified brutalities on the villagers.
The speakers at the press meet highlighted that instead of empowering minorities as per the recommendations of the Sachar Committee report, attempts were being made for disempowering them by conniving with the BJP and the industrialists to usurp poor people’s only asset the land.
On June 21 National Commission for Minorities Chairperson Wajahat Habibullah also visited the village and denounced the police action. He felt that the issue could have been resolved without the use of force. The Forbesganj police firing was wholly unjustified and could have been avoided, he said.
The incident has severely hit the popularity of Nitish Kumar. He has lost credibility amongst Muslims and his façade of giving clean administration to the Bihar state.