SIT to probe death of protestor against Bihar sugar factory

Patna, April 11 (IANS) Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Tuesday ordered a Special Investigation Team-probe into the death of a sugar factory worker in a self-immolation bid to protest against unpaid wages, officials said.

"A Special Investigation Team has been formed after Nitish Kumar asked a probe in the incident," an official from the Chief Minister's office said here.

Two workers, Naresh Srivastava and Suraj Baitha of a closed sugar factory at Motihari in East Champaran district, on Monday attempted self-immolation by jumping into a fire which was ignited using firewood and rubber tyres during a protest demanding payment of salaries due since 2002.

Both suffered severe burn injuries and were later shifted to the Patna Medical College and Hospital (PMCH) for treatment where Srivastava died, while Baitha was in serious condition.

However, officials of district administration in Motihari said the two workers were forced to jump into the fire under a conspiracy.

"We will look into this aspect," Superintendent of Police Jitendra Rana said.

This incident has come as a major embarrassment for the state government, which is busy celebrating the centenary celebrations of Mahatma Gandhi's Champaran Satyagraha, which changed the face of India's freedom struggle


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