Lok Janshakti Party (Ram Vilas) chief Chirag Paswan on Monday demanded a thorough probe regarding the alleged attack on Bihar migrant workers and bring the culprits to book, and ensure a hospitable atmosphere for the workforce in Tamil Nadu. The present crisis would not have occurred had Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar worked for the betterment and development of the state. People would not have gone out of Bihar in search of employment, he claimed. Meanwhile, the four-member official delegation from Bihar that visited Tirupur on Sunday travelled to neighbouring Coimbatore, which too has a sizeable number of migrant worker population. D Balamurugan, Bihar Rural development Secretary, said the alleged fake videos of attack on migrant workers had created panic among the labourers.
In Chennai, Paswan said, "I am not here to politicise the issue or blame anyone. If the videos on the attack on the Bihari guest workers are untrue, then who has spread the rumours and trying to divide the people and the country on lingual basis? "Those responsible for the attacks, if they had happened, or those spreading the rumours should be put behind bars," Paswan told reporters here. The Lok Sabha MP from Jamui said his visit to Tamil Nadu was specifically to express solidarity with the guest workers. He later submitted a memorandum on the issue to State Governor R N Ravi. "I am hearing about the atrocities on Bihar workers, been receiving phone calls and messages, too, saying they are being targeted in Coimbatore and other parts of Tamil Nadu. The truth on this should be exposed," Paswan added.
India did not have a concept of dual citizenship and people were free to work anywhere in the country, the MP said. "If the attack is mere rumours, then who is spreading it and what's their intention? They should be identified and punished," he demanded. Both he and his father, late Ram Vilas Paswan, have been visiting the state on several occasions and had fond memories but this sort of alleged attacks by some vested interest who want to divide the people in the name of language and geography, was disturbing, the LJP chief said."That's why I insist that this issue should be probed thoroughly. I am willing to give names and phone numbers of all those who called me and conveyed their apprehensions," Paswan added.
"The present crisis being faced by my people is because my Chief Minister Nitish Kumar failed to work for the betterment and development of the State. People had to migrate due to lack of employment opportunities in Bihar," he said. The Bihar Chief Minister gave a clean chit and then sent a team of officials to Tamil Nadu to ascertain the incidents of attacks. "My belief is that the people of my State are disturbed," the MP said before his meeting with the Governor. He interacted with the Bihar migrant workers living in Tamil Nadu. In Coimbatore, the Bihar delegation visited the places where migrant workers were staying and interacted with them. The team managed to convince the labourers that the videos of alleged attack were fake and there was no need to panic, Balamurugan said.
The workers had given some suggestions and opinions, which were passed on to the district officials, he said. Also, a team of officials from Jharkhand visited Tirupur. The delegation went to a couple of spinning mills located in the district to know about the status of the migrant workers and later held discussions with the District Collector. Meanwhile, the police registered a case against a portal Opindia, on a complaint from a DMK functionary that it spread false news and created fear among the migrant workers. The case was registered at Thirunindravur police station near here.