The Rashtriya Lok Samata Party (RLSP) has called for a state-wide bandh in Bihar on February 4 to protest against the lathicharge on party chief Upendra Kumshwaha during Jan Akrosh Rally in Patna on Saturday. Addressing the media at the party headquarters, RLSP working president Nagmani said the party called for 'Bihar Bandh' on February 4 to protest against the 'dictatorial' attitude of Nitish Kumar government that reflected through the police baton charge on Kushwaha, leaving him critically injured.
Apart from the RLSP, other allies of the Bihar grand alliance - RJD, Congress, Hindustani Awam Morcha and Vikasshil Insan Party - have also extended their support to the proposed strike across Bihar on February 4.
Early in the day, Kushwaha and several other party leaders were injured in a clash with the police after being prevented from marching towards the Raj Bhavan to demand educational reforms in the state.
Named 'Aakrosh' march, the Rashtriya Lok Samata Party (RLSP) rally was organised on the occasion of the birth anniversary of late Jagdeo Prasad, the tallest leader of Bihar from the Kushwaha community, considered the party's primary support base.
Armed with lathis (sticks) and raising slogans denouncing the state government for failing to do the needful on the party's charter of demands on educational reforms, the RLSP leaders came to blows with policemen at the Dak Bungalow crossing, about two kilometres from the Governor's residence.
Apart from Kushwaha, more than 100 party workers sustained injuries and were rushed to various nearby hospitals. Being asked about Kushwaha's condition, hospital sources said the RLSP leader was all right though he had been administered first aid and advised rest for at least a couple of days.
In December, Kushwaha quit as a Union minister and pulled out his support from the BJP-led alliance, accusing Prime Minister Narendra Modi of reducing the cabinet to a "rubber stamp". Days after, the former Union minister joined the Congress-RJD-led grand alliance in Bihar and also warned other smaller NDA allies to leave the Cabinet ahead of the Lok Sabha Elections 2019.
(With inputs from agencies)