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Nitish Should Resign Over Chhath Stampede: Lalu
The Opposition in Bihar today made a scathing attack on Nitish Kumar government for the death of 17 people in a stampede during Chhath festival with RJD president Lalu Prasad demanding that the Chief Minister should resign on moral ground.

"Nitish should tender resignation on moral ground in the wake of this vast human tragedy on the occasion of Chhath... If he fails to do so God will punish him," Prasad told reporters.

Stating that "adminstrative failure" was responsible for the yesterday's tragedy, Prasad, who airdashed here this afternoon, demanded that a case be registered under section 302 (murder) of IPC against officials responsible for the construction of the makeshift Chhachri bridge that caved in at the ghat triggering the stampede.

The RJD chief announced Rs 50,000 each from the party fund for those killed in the incident and later met families of the victims, 10 of whom were women and children.

On the Chief Minister's appeal that politics should be kept out of human tragedy, Prasad, a known bete noire of Kumar, said, "How can we remain silent on such a big incident... Responsibility has to be fixed for the incident."

Other Opposition parties like Congress, LJP, NCP and Left too hit out at the government over the tragedy.

Nationalist Congress Party General Secretary and Union Minister of State for Agriculture Tariq Anwar sought a high level inquiry into the incident to fix responsibility.

He said in a statement the event proves that there was "inadequate" arrangement for Chhath by the government.

State Congress President, Chaudhary Mehboob Kaisar visited Patna Medical College Hospital, where some victims are under treatment.

The tragedy was a result of "complete failure" of the administration, he said and demanded registration of cases against those involved in the construction of the make-shift bridge. He also sought a probe by an all-party committee into the event.

LJP too blamed the government for the tragedy.

Party National General Secretary Satyanand Sharma said in a statement that there was "inadequate" arrangement for Chhath that led to the "ugly episode".

CPI, CPI-M and CPI-ML too strongly condemned the incident which they said happened due to "criminal neglect" of the state government and the administration.

Meanwhile, Deputy Chief minister and senior BJP leader Sushil Kumar Modi met Kumar and the victims' families over the tragedy.
Emerging story. Watch this space for updates as more details come in
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1/D-52
Nov 22, 2012
11:47 AM

 These self-declared champions of human cause are bee-lining to advise the hon'ble CM on what could have been done to avert the mishap is like Henry ford advising Hitler on setting up concentration camps.These time servers are out in the masses to do their patchwork of political landscape. Before shamelessly fishing in troubled water they should have thought of the numerous such tragedies caused by their own selfish negligence during their tenure as the commander of corrupts in Bihar.Their advices appear to yield nothing near the solution.Despite the fact that it is a passing event for the brutal regime today, this tragedy will leave a long lasting impression on people's memory. Bihar has plenty of emotional resources to overcome this chaos that NK has indisputably created. People are angry , but anger does not make history , power does. These old timers are ranting in the loudest voice seeking attention and political mileage.By simply overdramatizing people's tragedy won't bring mandate in favor of Lalu or Ramvilas. The dog fight among these political scoundrels has changed Bihar into a cage of vicious rivalry leaving the corrupt bureaucrats free to maneuver. The time has come for the Biharis to rise from the slumber and demand a ruthless accountability for all the current and old guards of power.

Arshad Mohsin, Salmiya
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