Excise Official Arrested after Busting JD-U Leader for Possessing Liquor Bottles

Chief Minister Nitish Kumar's prohibition policy coming back to haunt him following the arrest of party leader in Nalanda.

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Patna: It was just a matter of time when the Nitish government would break its own prohibition laws after months of tough talking about sparing no one who either brought, sold, bought, possessed or consumed alcohol in Bihar, authorities in Nalanda on Thursday arrested Nalanda Excise Inspector on charges of 'conspiring' against a Janata Dal – U leader from whose house he recovered 168 bottles of alcohol during a raid on August 30.

Deepak Kumar, the Excise official who arrested JD-U leader Indrajeet Sen, a close Nitish associate, from his home in Biharsharif after recovering 168 bottles of liquor, was arrested by police in Nalanda district on charges of hatching a conspiracy to frame the JD-U leader, the party President in Harnaut, the home turf of Chief Minister Nitish Kumar.

According to the reports, Sen, after his arrest was produced before a court and sent to jail. However, as the news of his arrest reached Patna, officials in Nalanda district released the JD-U leader saying the order for his release came from a 'top party leader' in the state capital.

Kumar was briefly released from the jail on Friday only to be arrested again on Saturday.

Denying any conspiracy, the Excise inspector said he did what he was required to do – arrest those who were in violation of prohibition laws.

"When I get information about someone breaking the law, I react accordingly. I do not question who the person is who is he is connected with. I have made many arrests in the past but this is the first time I am being accused of conspiring against someone," Kumar said.

Seizing on the opposition, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leaders accused the District Magistrate and Superintendent of Police (SP) of Nalanda district of acting as the personal agents of the ruling JD-U.

Demanding immediate removal of the DM and the SP, former Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Kumar Modi accused the JD-U of adopting dual alcohol policy – one meant for the ordinary people and the other for the ruling party ministers, office-bearers, and supporters.

Modi also demanded the Director General of Police (DGP) to initiate a full enquiry into the recovery of liquor bottles from the home of Sen and the subsequent arrest of the official who carried out the raid at Sen's house.

Caught in a strange situation, Nitish Kumar is yet to make a statement on the controversy. Sources said he is in consultation with his inner circle behind closed door to formulate his strategy to deal with the situation.

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