India Politics
Cancel Shahabuddin's Lok Sabha membership: CPI-ML
May 8, 2007 - 1:01:46 PM

Patna, May 8 - Soon after a Bihar court Tuesday sentenced Rashtriya Janata Dal MP Mohammed Shahabuddin to life imprisonment for murder, the Communist Party of India-Marxist-Leninist - has demanded the cancellation of his Lok Sabha membership.

Additional district and sessions judge Gyaneshwar Prasad Srivastava of a special court inside the Siwan jail, 150 km from here, sentenced Shahabuddin to life imprisonment for the murder of CPI-ML activist Chhote Lal Gupta in 1999.

'We welcome the special court's verdict against Shahabuddin and demand that the Lok Sabha speaker cancel Shahabuddin's membership on the grounds of conviction and life imprisonment in a criminal case,' CPI-ML state secretary Ramjatan Sharma told IANS over telephone.

The party also demanded that RJD chief and Railway Minister Lalu Prasad take action against Shahabuddin.

'We will demand that Lalu Prasad oust Shahabuddin from the RJD, It is high time Lalu should come out either to protect the convicted Shahabuddin or reject him,' Sharma said.

A group of CPI-ML leaders and workers at the state party office on Birchand Patel Marg here appeared happy at the court's decision to sentence Shahabuddin for life.

'The verdict against Shahabuddin is a matter to celebrate. After all, it was only CPI-ML that had been single-handedly fighting against him in Siwan,' said CPI-ML leader K.D. Yadav.

The special court had Saturday convicted Shahabuddin on the basis of circumstantial evidence under section 364 - of the Indian Penal Code for Gupta's kidnap and murder.

This is the second time Shahabuddin has been sentenced in a criminal case by the special court. In March, he was convicted of attacking the CPI-ML office in Siwan town Sep 19, 1998.

A Lok Sabha member from Siwan since 1996, Shahabuddin is involved in 40 criminal cases, including those of murder, abduction and possession of illegal arms.

Currently lodged in Siwan jail, Shahabuddin was arrested in Delhi a year ago over a seizure of arms from his ancestral house in Siwan.

Earlier this year, the Patna High Court directed that all pending cases against him be tried by a special court set up by the state government in Siwan jail.

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