Protests in Bihar Against Arrest of Employees’ Leaders

On 18 December 2017, two popular leaders of Bihar State Non-Gazetted Employees Federation (Gope faction) – Comrade Rambali Prasad (Federation’s President) and Comrade Premchand Sinha, (Federation’s General Secretary) were arrested at Bihar Secretariat sent to jail. The government had called the leaders for a dialogue following a nearly two-month long agitation by Auxiliary Nurse Midwife (ANM) demanding regularisation. However, instead of constructively deliberating on their demands, the government has only tried to brutally repress the agitation by lathi-charging the protestors and arresting their leaders by deception. The CPI(ML) Bihar state unit has strongly condemned the arrest of the leaders and demanded their immediate release. CPI(ML) Bihar Secretary Com. Kunal said that the Nitish government after joining hands with the BJP wants to impose fascist rule on Bihar just as their allies have been doing. He warned the state government the workers and karamcharis of the state will not tolerate this.

Protests have been taking place across all districts in Bihar following their arrest. On 20 December, angry protests took place in several districts including Patna and Bhagalpur and the effigy of the state government was burnt. Protestors across the state demanded release of the two leaders and an immediate resolution of the demands being raised by the ANMs.