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Will fulfill my promises and do beyond that says PM Modi in Bihar

Bihar: Launching the NDA’s poll campaign in Bihar, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday said at an event in Patna that he will “go beyond” what he promised on allocation of funds for the state.

After arriving in Patna, Prime Minister Modi shared the stage with Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar, who questioned him recently on his promises made during last year’s Lok Sabha election. The two leaders came together at a function to launch multiple projects and two trains, agencies reported.

Modi is also expected to address a rally in Muzaffarpur later in the day as part of the election campaign.
“Before the Lok Sabha polls, I promised Rs 50,000 crore for Bihar (if elected)...I will fulfil my promise and announce the package at the right time. And I will go beyond what was promised,” HT quoted Modi as saying.

Modi is reported to have rued that projects which was started a long time ago during the previous NDA regime remained pending after it lost power.
Meanwhile, Zee News reported that BJP leader Shahnawaz Hussain responded to Nitish Kumar’s questioning of Modi over his poll promises, saying in posts on Twitter that the people of Bihar want answers for the “jungle raj-1” of Lalu Prasad Yadav and “jungle raj-2” of Nitish Kumar.

At the event in Patna, Modi flagged off a railway line and a train from Patna to Mumbai, as also an incubation centre for medical electronics.
However, reacting to his announcements, JD(U) president Sharad Yadav said that he did not announce any new schemes and merely repackaged old ones, Zee news reported.

At the event, Nitish Kumar said, “We're grateful that after 14 months Modiji finds time to visit Bihar. As we get ready to hear more promises what about his old ones?” Nitish also reminded about the issue of granting special status to Bihar, and said that the demand is still pending.
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60 Bihar school children fall ill after mid-day meal

At least 60 children fell ill on Tuesday after having their mid-day meal at a government school in Bihar's Bhojpur district, officials said.

The children complained of uneasiness after consuming the meal at Mathia Middle School, and were admitted to the hospital where the condition of four of them is stated to be critical, a district official said, IANS reported.

"After treatment at the hospital, all the children will be discharged by evening," he added.

The samples of the meal have been collected by police for forensic examination.

According to the officials, some children said a lizard was found in the mid-day meal served to them.

However, the doctors who examined the children did not find any sign of poison in their bodies.

In Bihar, 16 million students get food under the mid-day meal scheme daily, which covers 72,000 schools across the state.

representational image
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Bihar gang stop trains with Rupee 1 coins

Ongole: Government railway police officials suspect the involvement of a Bihar gang in the robbery that took place on the Chennai-bound Hyderabad-Chennai Express, in which robbers snatched a 24-gram gold chain from a sleeping woman passenger.

“We are suspecting Bihar gang’s involvement in train robberies. They change the signal lights by using one rupee coins in other states also,” said railway circle inspector K. Venkatewara Rao.

Workers from Bihar are on the railway track maintenance on contract basis. They have the ‘technical knowledge’ to change the signal lights by using one rupee coins. The Bihar gang had similarly changed the railway signalling lights in Delhi and snatched the gold chains from the sleeping women passengers. It was first time in the state that the robbers changed the signal lights by using one rupee coins.

Police has stepped up the vigil on the movements of the Bihar batch. In all incidents, the robbers snatched chains from outside the train. The police has got some information about the robbers.

Meanwhile, the railway S.P. Subba Rao, at the behest of the railway additional D.G. K.R.M. Kishore Kumar, issued an order to the cops in security duty to fire at the robbers who try to stop the train by changing the signal lights, by pulling the chain, or trying to snatch the chains from the sleeping women on the berths.

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Bihar students cheat in exams by using high-tech gadgets

Patna: Students using unfair means in examinations remain undeterred in Bihar despite the recent hue and cry over cases of widespread cheating in the state.

On Sunday, the police arrested 13 candidates who were taking the Bihar Combined Entrance Competitive Examination Board (BCECEB) for using high-tech gadgets from different centres in Patna.

The combined examinations were being held for getting admission to different engineering and medical colleges.

Eight of the arrested turned out to be girls. This is the first time when such a large number of women candidates have been taken into custody for resorting to dishonest methods.

The eight nabbed were identified as Priti Sagar from Bihar Sharif, Kumari Madhu from Begusarai, Seema Pravin from Madhubani, Payal Kumari from Samastipur, Shweta from Gaya, Jyoti Anand from Danapur besides Pooja and Bhageshwari from the state capital Patna.

The police said that all the candidates were caught for using Bluetooth-enabled devices while taking their examination.

Patna SSP Jitendra Rana said that the police were trying to ascertain whether the arrested students were genuine candidates or proxy examinees taking the examination on behalf of others.

The matter came to light when a woman candidate was caught using electronic devices to remain in touch with those who were dictating the answers to her.

Among other things, the police recovered a micro speaker attached to her left ear. One of the arrested candidates told the police that they had paid a hefty sum of money to the racketeers who had promised to pass on the correct answers through different tools while they sat for the examination.

The police suspect that the racketeers might have got hold of the answer keys to the different sets of questions and were narrating the answers to the candidates from outside the centres by taking the help of latest technology.

However, this is not the first time when candidates have been caught red-handed while using electronic instrument, including cellphones, to cheat in an examination. Last year, the Bihar Police had caught more than a 100 people who were helping the candidates through high-tech tools during the police recruitment test.

Earlier this year, pictures of 'helpers' climbing multi-storied buildings to assist the candidates had cast a shadow on the matriculation examination in the state.

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Four children charred to death in Bihar

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Nitish Kumar to take oath as Bihar Chief Minister today

Nitish Kumar to take oath as Bihar Chief Minister today

Patna: Senior Janata Dal (United) leader Nitish Kumar will be sworn in as the Chief Minister of Bihar here on Sunday evening.

He will be administered the oath of office and secrecy at the Raj Bhawan in Patna by Governor Keshari Nath Tripathi.

Nitish had on Friday met Governor Keshari Nath Tripathi and staked his claim to form the next government in the state following the resignation of Jitan Ram Manjhi from the top post ahead of the crucial trust vote in the state assembly.

Nitish had also emulated Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal by apologising to the people of Bihar for his 'emotional decision' to step down.

He had stepped down as the state Chief Minister after his party's dismal show in the 2014 Lok Sabha polls.

This will be Nitish Kumar's fourth stint as the Chief Minister.

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Bihar Crisis: Ahead of floor test, Assembly Speaker to decide opposition between JD(U) and BJP

Bihar Crisis: Ahead of floor test, Assembly Speaker to decide opposition between JD(U) and BJP

With a day left for the crucial floor test in Bihar, Assembly Speaker Uday Narain Choudhary was authorised on Wednesday to decide whether JD(U) or BJP would sit in the opposition gallery during the confidence vote on February 20.

Embattled Chief Minister Jitan Ram Manjhi, who did not attend the all party meeting in which the decision was taken, put up a show of confidence claiming that he has majority support and would sail through the trust vote. Senior minister Narendra Singh, who is in the Manjhi camp, backed the claim and said it has the support of 140 MLAs, 23 more than the magic figure of 117 in the house whose effective strength is 233.

The view of the BJP-LP meeting during the day that the party should vote for Manjhi during the confidence vote came as a boost. BJP chief spokesman Binod Narayan Jha said the majority view of the MLAs was that the party should stand with Manjhi during the trust vote. BJP's 87 MLAs support is crucial for Manjhi to have any chance of survival.

Manjhi received more good news as Patna High Court gave his government the freedom to take decisions but directed that their implementation should be only after February 21. He held a meeting of his Cabinet in the evening and approved many proposals.

The all-party meeting to decide on the seating arrangements during the trust vote and also the JD(U) plea to allow it to sit in opposition gallery saw vociferous protests from principal opposition BJP. As the leader of BJP in the house Nand Kishore Yadav walked out of the meeting no decision could be taken and the meeting authorised Speaker Uday Narayan Chaudhary to decide the issues.

JD(U)LP leader in the Assembly Vijay Chaudhary appealed to the speaker to accord his party the status of opposition party and recognise him as the Leader of Opposition during the confidence vote. He was backed by party leader Nitish Kumar.

"We have claimed the opposition seat on the basis of our number and argument that since we have to oppose the trust vote we should be given opposition status on the day," Kumar told reporters emerging from the Legislative Council of which he is a member. He said a similar plea has been submitted in Council too to accord status of opposition party to JD(U).

Leader of Opposition (BJP) Nand Kishore Yadav countered Chaudhary's argument saying the confidence vote is for the cabinet and except for Manjhi, who has been expelled, other ministers despite being suspended remain members of JD(U).

"How can JD(U) sit in both treasury and opposition sides?" Yadav asked speaking to reporters.

Manjhi was invited to the meeting but he did not attend it. Legislature party leaders of RJD, Congress and CPI were present.

"We waited for Manjhi for good 15-20 minutes but he did not turn up," the speaker told reporters at a meeting of Press Advisory Committee.

Chaudhary said the house members have to sit according to arrangements made by him. "Chief Minister Jitan Ram Manjhi will sit on his original chair marked for the CM despite being declared unattached but his other seven ministers who are still part of JD(U) despite being suspended will have to sit alongside their party colleagues."

The Speaker said he has given permission to TV channels for live telecast of the assembly proceedings on that day. He said as per the Assembly secretariat, JD(U)'s strength in the house was 109 excluding him and Manjhi. It would publish a new list of members of different political parties in the house at the earliest.

On the issue of recognition JD(U) chief whip in view of Manjhi in his capacity of leader of the house nominating his loyalist Rajiv Ranjan to the post, the speaker said as per rules the party chief has to inform appointment of a person to this post and so far the JD(U) president had not given any letter for replacing the existing incumbent Shrawan Kumar. Any whip issued by Rajiv Ranjan would be against the rules, he said.

Asked whether the Budget session would continue if Manjhi failed to win the trust vote, Chaudhary said in such an eventuality the Assembly would be adjourned sine die. Meanwhile, Kumar and his supporters remained busy in breaking bread together through the day.

After a lunch hosted by RJDLP leader Abdul Bari Siddiqui, MLAs of JD(U), RJD, Congress, CPI and an independent rooting for Kumar were invited to a dinner hosted by former minister Vijay Chaudhary. The MLAs will meet over lunch at former minister Ranju Geeta's residence and dinner at Kumar's house tomorrow.

CLP leader Sadanand Singh said the party MLAs were "solidly" behind Nitish Kumar.Narendra Singh claimed he received a threat call on his telephone from a supporter of Nitish Kumar for siding with Manjhi.

The person who identified himself as Chaudhary telephoned him while he was with the CM at around 8:47 AM in the morning and threatened him with dire consequences, Singh said adding he had urged the caller to repeat his words and switched on the speaker so that Manjhi could also hear the threat. Source : dna
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Bank robbery: 'Family gang' arrest in Bihar

Bank robbery: 'Family gang' arrest in Bihar

Patna: Stories about robbers’ gangs have become part of daily life but it was nothing less than a shock to know that all the male members of a family joined hands to loot banks. 

The “family gang” had been operating in Bihar’s Banka district, about 270 km from the state capital, till the police got a whiff of their modus operandi and apprehended the head of the family, Bateshwar Mandal.  

Mandal, his three sons and three other relatives were involved in a bank robbery last week in which they escaped with Rs 11.6 lakh from the State Bank of India’s (SBI) Dudhari Bazar branch in Banka. 

While Mandal was arrested first, his three sons – Nagmani, Pandav and Angad – were apprehended later. 

The search that followed yielded Rs 5 lakh in cash, eight pistols, live cartridges, bombs and explosives. 

On sustained interrogation, Mandal and his sons admitted that they were involved in the loot of Rs 11.6 lakh from SBI after seriously injuring the guard and a staff of the bank. 

The police made another breakthrough the following day when it apprehended Mandal’s relative Rahul, who was also an accused in the bank robbery case. The police said two more relatives, accused in the case, are absconding.

Banka Superintendent of Police Satya Prakash said the gang members admitted that emboldened over the success of last week’s robbery, they were planning to rob two more SBI branches at Kakbara and Makdumma, respectively. 

The police were initially hesitant to touch Mandals as they lead a rich and prosperous life in Banka with a fleet of cars. 

Bateshwar, an affluent farmer of the area, said he had received a substantial sum from the government as compensation for the land which was the latter acquired near the railway track. 

But the Banka SP said the cash seized from his house was part of the amount looted from the bank. 

“Besides, we have recovered the motorcycle, used in the robbery, from his house. Since we have substantial evidence of Mandal and his family members’ involvement in the robbery case, we will submit a proposal to the government to confiscate Bateshwar’s property,” said the senior police official.

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