patna,(bihartimes): ever since may 15, 2009––the day when the result of the last lok sabha election came––bihar chief minister nitish kumar has been consistently demanding the special status category for bihar.
of late, a couple of vernacular dailies having their editions in bihar have, for reasons better known to them, started championing this cause though the argument is not cutting much ice among the common masses, who think that this is the best excuse for inaction by the nitish kumar government.
singh, who while in service gained popularity by helping downtrodden people of the society and by providing educational kits to their wards, said the people elected him as their representative to sort out problems. “but i have not been able to redress their grievances.”
independent bihar mla from obra in aurangabad district som prakash singh managed to win the 2010 state assembly election even in the nda wave simply because of his personal image. just two years later he is extremely bitter because of rampant corruption and loot from the grassroots level to the top.
“i have not lived up to the expectations of the people who had elected me as a legislator. if there is any morality left in me, i should resign. the people of my constituency have the right to elect a new representative,” he told media recently.
singh, who is in early 40s, took voluntary retirement from the police force to contest the polls. but now he says: had it been possible for him he would have gone back to his earlier profession. “as a police officer, i at least had the power to arrest the corrupt. but as an mla, i find myself devoid of any power to take action against anybody indulging in corrupt practices,” he said further.
stating that he is a probationer in politics and is still learning the ropes he said he had realised that bureaucrats and their agents have made a mockery of the democratic system in the state.
he had planned to fight corruption by asking the people of his constituency not to pay bribes. “after my address, a public distribution system (pds) dealer ramji yadav from daudnagar block told me that he and his colleagues had to grease the palm of the officers to get their quota of ration and kerosene. i wrote letters to the district magistrate in this regard but failed to get any response from them. i, thereafter, complained about it to chief minister nitish kumar,” he said.
nitish asked the food and consumer affairs minister shyam rajak to look into the complaint and take action against the erring staff.
but, according to singh, after a month, yadav’s licence for the shop was cancelled as he dared to highlight corruption in the system. not only this, when he went to the officials to seek the refund of rs 40,000 that he had deposited in advance for lifting the grains, he was asked to pay bribe.
singh said that yadav did not even have enough money to pay the fees for his son’s education. “i am raising funds to help him so that the study of his ward, a student of engineering in aligarh, doesn’t discontinue,” he said.
this is just one example and that he had innumerable such experiences which “have forced me to think about resigning as an mla.” “but i will definitely make it a big issue before quitting,” he warned.
however, the food and consumer affairs minister, shyam rajak, has something else to say. the licence of yadav’s shop was cancelled after irregularities were detected. “it is true that mla singh had requested for a detailed inquiry. i will order an inquiry if ramji yadav submits a written complaint with evidence,” he said.