A day after the Income Tax Department conducted raids at 22 locations in New Delhi and adjoining areas in connection with the alleged benami (proxy) land deals linked to Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) chief Lalu Prasad and his family members, a clash broke out between workers of the RJD and the BJP in Patna on Wednesday. Several workers from both parties were injured.The BJP later filed a police complaint against Mr. Prasad and his two Minister-sons for “orchestrating the attack on the BJP office”.At least six partymen from the BJP and others from the RJD were injured in the clash which broke out after hundreds of bare-bodied RJD youth wing workers marched to the BJP office at Beerchand Patel Path, shouting slogans against BJP and its party leader Sushil Kumar Modi for “continuously attacking the RJD chief and his family”.The protesting RJD partymen were, apparently, also furious at the Income Tax raid on Mr. Prasad and his kin on Tuesday.Carrying party flags, the RJD youth wing workers reached the BJP office, just 100 metres from the RJD office on the same road, and a clash broke out. They exchanged baton blows and threw bottles and stones at each other. Several vehicles parked outside the BJP office too were damaged. The police had a tough time controlling the situation.In the BJP office at Patna, no senior leader was present as the party had called a State-wide dharna against corruption, while demanding that the two sons of the RJD chief [Tejashwi Prasad Yadav and Tej Pratap Yadav] be sacked from the Nitish Cabinet.‘Shameful attack’“It was an attack on the BJP office to gag the voice of the opposition,” alleged senior State BJP leader Sushil Kumar Modi.Describing the attack as “shameful”, State BJP president Nityanand Rai said it happened “on the direction of Lalu Prasad Yadav…we’ll take this issue to the court and not be distracted from the real issue of corruption charges against Lalu Prasad and his family members.”A delegation of BJP leaders met the Director General of Police P.K. Thakur and demanded action against RJD workers. “We will take action after verifying the evidence,” said Additional Director General of Police (headquarter), S.K. Singhal.RJD spokesperson Manoj Jha blamed the BJP workers for first throwing stones and beer bottles on the “peaceful march” of RJD workers. “As many 26 RJD workers were injured…the police should investigate how beer bottles came in the BJP office in dry Bihar,” Mr. Jha told journalists in Patna.
Manoj said that he will file a case in the Punjab and Haryana High CourtFeeling “insulted” after his name was not added to this year’s list of Arjuna awardees, boxer Manoj Kumar today said he would sue the Sports Ministry for the “injustice” meted out to him.The controversial recommendation of boxer Jai Bhagwan for the prestigious Arjuna Awards stands after the selection committee yesterday decided not to make any changes in the original 15-athlete list.Sports Authority of India Director General Jiji Thomson, who was part of the Awards committee, said the panel discussed seven athletes in the review meeting but it was unanimously agreed that no changes were needed.Manoj said that he had been assured by the sports secretary and Thomson himself that his name would be added in yesterday’s meeting and their backtracking was a “betrayal”.”When my elder brother met the Sports Secretary on August 13, the Sports Secretary had admitted that there was a mistake on the part of the ministry by mistakenly thinking that I was involved in a dope offence. Mr Ajit Sharan had told my brother that my name will be added in the review meeting,” Manoj, who is in the national camp at the NIS, said.”The SAI DG himself called me up the next day (August 14) that my case will be considered and no injustice would be done to me. He assured me that my name will be added in the Arjuna list. But all these turned out to be false promises and they have backtracked now. I have a trial for the Asian Games next week and I am in severe mental stress,” he said.advertisement”First, they tarnished my image by mistakenly calling me a dope offender and then betrayed me by backtracking on what they had promised. It’s an insult and betrayal,” a dejected Manoj, who won a gold in 2010 Delhi Commonwealth Games, said.Manoj’s elder brother and coach Rajesh Kumar said that he will file a case in the Punjab and Haryana High Court.”This is an injustice to my brother. What motivation an athlete will have to bring laurels for the country if he was treated like this. I will file a case at the High Court in Chandigarh very soon.”I will file an RTI to the government tomorrow first and then the case at the High Court. I will ask for the points Manoj has got under the marking system used by the selection panel and the points earned by the 15 recommended athletes. That information will be used as evidence in the High Court case,” said Rajesh.Rajesh also wondered how Thomson can claim that Manoj has time with him and he can get the award later on. “How can it be? He (Manoj) won a gold in the 2010 Commonwealth Games and this achievement will not be considered for next year’s Arjuna Award as only four-year achievement is counted. Next year’s Arjuna will start counting achievements from 2011 onwards,” he said.”Otherwise, what is the point of waiting. If a person is deserving, then he is deserving. Many a times in the past, two athletes from the same sport were given Arjuna.”Rajesh said Sports Minister Sarbananda Sonowal had also assured, through his personal secretary, that the case of Manoj will be addressed and those officials who committed the mistake of taking him as a dope offender will be taken to task.”I sought a meeting with the sports minister on August 13 and I waited for him late on that day. The Minister returned to office around 9:30pm after some work. The Minister sent his PS to tell me that Manoj’s case will be reconsidered in the selection committee meeting.”The PS also told me that the officials who placed Manoj’s name as a dope offender before the selection panel will also be taken to task. But now it turned out that all these were just talk in the air,” he said.