Patna, Mar 5 (PTI): The ongoing protest by contractual teachers in Bihar took a violent turn today as agitators, irked over police lathi charge, torched two police jeeps and damaged over half-a-dozen buses and other vehicles, including that of a BJP legislator.
The R-Block area, around 500 metres from the Assembly, where contractual teachers are holding a protest dharna, turned into a virtual battle field witnessing violent clash between the protesters and the police. City superintendent of police Jaykant said the agitators torched two police vehicles while more than 10 vehicles have been damaged.
Following stone pelting, tear gas shells were fired by the police to control the agitators. The vehicle of a BJP legislator was also damaged by the protesters, police sources said. Traffic was disrupted in many parts of the state capital.
Meanwhile, the Opposition created pandemonium in the Legislative Assembly during the post-lunch session today alleging police firing on the agitating contractual teachers even as the government denied the claim and reports aired by a section of the electronic media.
No police firing had taken place on the contractual teachers, but the police burst teargas shells and lathi charged the protesters after they pelted stones on the cops and set vehicles afire near R-Block, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Brijendra Prasad Yadav informed the House. He dismissed as “incorrect,” reports by a section of the electronic media claiming police firing on the protesters.
Yadav made the statement in the House after the Opposition members led by the RJD had staged a walk out protesting against the alleged police firing. After being informed about the alleged incident, the Opposition members led by the Deputy Leader of Opposition Samrat Chaudhary rose to their feet demanding adjournment of the business of the House at a time when the contractual teachers were allegedly fired upon by the police.
After the Speaker rejected their demand, they trooped into the well of the House and vociferously raised slogans against the state government, disrupting the speech of the Road Construction Minister Nand Kishore Yadav. Amid the din, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Bijendra Prasad Yadav stood up to say that the state government was verifying reports about the alleged police firing and urged the protesting Opposition members to resume their speech which they did.
Soon after, the Opposition members, led this time by the Leader of Opposition Abdul Bari Siddique, again rose on their feet and pleaded with the Speaker to adjourn the House. The Speaker, however, did not heed to the Opposition’s demand, consequent to which they staged a walk out.