Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar today directed the officials to ensure a timely disposal of applications filed under the Right to Public Services Act at a review meeting, which also witnessed a protest by the local MP over the seating arrangements. At a meeting where the development works in Munger, Lakhisarai, Begusarai, Sheikhpura and Jamui districts were reviewed, the JD(U) chief pointed out that issuance of character, caste and income certificates came under the purview of the act and added that these must be provided to the applicants within the stipulated time-frame. He also took stock of progress of the schemes launched as part of his "Saat Nishchay" (seven resolves) programme of good governance, which included equipping every household of the state with power connection, tap water and toilets, besides measures meant for the youth like credit cards for students. Meanwhile, before the meeting, local MP Veena Devi stormed out of the collectorate premises, alleging that she was insulted as she was not offered a seat at a proper place. The Lok Janshakti Party (LJP) MP, who is the wife of mafia don-turned-politician Surajbhan Singh who is in jail as he was convicted in a murder case, told reporters, "I was asked to take a seat among the officials. This was a violation of the protocol. I am going to Delhi tomorrow and raise this issue before Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh and Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan." Blaming the Munger District Magistrate (DM), she said, "I will see to it that this particular officer is moved out of my constituency." However, Munger DM Uday Kumar Singh denied the allegation, saying, "Nobody had asked her (Veena Devi) to take a seat among the officials.
In fact, an entire row of seats was earmarked for the elected representatives from the districts. "The MP became livid as soon as she saw there was no chair for her on the dais. The dais was small and could accommodate only a few people. So, only the chief minister and the ministers accompanying him were seated there." Kumar was accompanied by state ministers Rajiv Ranjan Singh alias Lalan Singh, Shailesh Kumar, Kapildev Kamat, Vijay Kumar Sinha and Kumari Manju Verma.
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