A day after he was released on bail in a case of alleged forgery over arranging buses for the stranded migrants, UP Congress president Ajay Kumar Lallu on Thursday launched a fresh salvo at the BJP government in the state, demanding resignation of two ministers – Basic Education Minister Satish Dwivedi and Animal Husbandry Minister Jai Prakash Nishad – over allegation of corruption in their respective departments.
Congress MLA from Tahmukhi Raj, Lallu said that he was not given any special privilege in the jail despite being a legislator and was treated as a common prisoner.
“Ideally, an MLA is eligible for B category in the jail, but I was kept as a common prisoner. I used to sleep on the floor with 10 other inmates in my barrack. I used to wake up at 5.30 am with other prisoners to clean the jail and then stand in queue for morning tea and lunch,” said Lallu, who spent nearly a month in jail in a forgery case lodged by the state government.
He also said that no one was allowed to meet him including his lawyers, and was barred from writing a letter from the jail.
“Ajay Lallu kabhi daman se, dar se, sarkar ke atyachaar se jhukne ka kaam nahi kiya hai… Ajay Lallu ladai jaari rakhega (Ajay Lallu has never got scared by suppression and atrocities of the government. Will continue to fight,” he said, adding that it is the BJP government, which is working under fear.
Raising the recent controversies surrounding the recruitment of teachers and police personnel, and allegation of corruption in awarding government contracts in Animal Husbandry department, Lallu hit out at Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath accusing of him being involved too.
“Personal secretaries of the ministers have been involved in some of these scams. In Animal Husbandry Department, tenders of Rs 9 crore was cleared. How is it possible that the minister had no knowledge of it. Both Basic Education Minister (Satish Dwivedi) and Animal Husbandry Minister (Jai Prakash Nishad) should resign… It appears that even the Chief Minister (Yogi Adityanath) is involved as he had tried to hide the facts,” Lallu said.
Claiming that FIRs have been lodged against 69 Congress leaders for raising these issues, Lallu said, “The fight would begin from today only and we will expose the BJP government.”
Lallu was arrested by Lucknow police in Agra on May 20 soon after he was granted bail for holding protests against the government’s refusal to allow 1,000 buses arranged by the Congress to ferry the stranded migrant workers from the UP border to their home districts. Lallu was accused of providing fake documents of the buses and charged for forgery, cheating, and criminal conspiracy.
After lower courts refused to grant him bail, the Congress leader moved the High Court, which allowed his released from the jail on June 16.
Granting him bail on a personal bond and two sureties to the satisfaction of the court, Justice Attau Rahman Masoodi of the Allahabad High Court termed the facts of the case “peculiar” and said “the trial court… seems to have erred in rejecting the prayer for bail…”
The High Court said that while the courts of law must maintain a distance from making an estimate of political gain or loss, it is the duty of the government and the Opposition to deliver more solutions to public grievances instead of engaging in conflicts.
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