Munger is on the boil again. Protesters voicing displeasure against the district administration set vehicles on fire and damaged public property on Thursday .
Authorities have imposed prohibitory orders under section 144 of the criminal procedure code (CrPC) even as the election commission ordered an investigation into the violence on Monday, just two days ahead of the assembly elections in Bihar started.
Over 100 people were detained for the violence on Thursday. The protests forced the election commission to shift district magistrate Rajesh Meena and Superintendent of Police Lipi Singh away from the region. Their replacements will be announced in a day or two, officials said.
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The protests on Thursday mostly involved youths who raised slogans against Lipi Singh and set many vehicles, including two belonging to the police stationed outside the Puravsarai outpost, on fire, The Indian Express reported. They also attacked the offices of the sub-divisional officer and the SP and the Mufassil police station and also damaged many public property.
The protest began after about 50 people gathered at Bata Chowk around 10.30 am. What started as a peaceful protest turned violent as protesters marched towards the district magistrate’s office and Kotwali.
Many in Munger are unhappy over what they see is the failure of the SP Lipi Singh and other district officials to control the violence on Monday during the immersion of a Durga idol that left one person dead .
The violence on Monday started when the police opened fire on a procession carrying ‘Badi Ma Durga’ for immersion.
The election commission has asked Magadh Commissioner Asangba Chuba Ao to investigate the violence and submit a report in a week.
“In the light of prevailing situation in Munger, ECI has ordered immediate removal of SP and DM Munger. ECI has also ordered inquiry into the entire incident by Asangba Chuba Ao, divisional commissioner, Magadh, which has to be completed within the next seven days,” the Bihar chief electoral officer said in a press release.
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The opposition, led by the RJD, targeted the Nitish Kumar-led government as it tried to make the violence an issue in the ongoing election that has two more phases left after the first phase was conducted on Wednesday (October28).