Confiscate properties of corrupt politicians: JD-U MP

Monday, December 20, 2010

PATNA - After Bihar confiscated the properties of a corrupt official to convert them into primary schools, an MP from the ruling Janata Dal-United (JD-U) Monday said the state government should step up its fight against corruption by taking over properties of other politicians who have accumulated wealth by illegal means.

“Now the time has come to make changes in the existing law to confiscate the properties of corrupt politicians, including ministers and legislators,” JD-U Rajya Sabha member Upendra Kushwaha told IANS.

There was an urgent need to make provisions for this in the Bihar Special Courts Act, he added.

“Like corrupt officials, there are corrupt politicians who have constructed palatial buildings and accumulated wealth by illegal means. The government must act against them also,” he said.

Kushwaha said unless the government decides to act against corrupt politicians, the fight against graft will be half-hearted.

Nitish Kumar declared a war against corruption after he became chief minister for the second consecutive term last month.

The government began the process of setting up a primary school in the property confiscated from former motor vehicle inspector Raghuvansh Kunwar at Chaira village in Samastipur district.

The court directed the state government early this month to comply with the confiscation order within a month.

According to an official in the state vigilance department, the court’s order comes after four months of speedy trial of the case.

The official said Kunwar’s properties include two plots and a four storey building at Kankarbagh locality in Patna, a house in Chaira, a jeep, Rs.1.94 lakh in cash and investments of Rs.8 lakh. “He owns property worth Rs.80 lakh,” the official added.

Kunwar was Sep 24, 2008 caught accepting a bribe of Rs.50,000 when he was posted in Aurangabad district. A case of disproportionate assets was lodged against him in 2009.

Kunwar is not alone as hearings in disproportionate assets cases are underway against 12 government officials of the state. An official said all the cases were likely to be disposed of within the next six months.

Six special courts - two each in Patna, Bhagalpur and Muzaffarpur - had been constituted by the state government with the permission of the Patna High Court for speedy trial of cases involving a sum of over Rs.25 crore.

Filed under: Politics

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