Thief inadvertently exposes BJP MP’s undisclosed wealth

PATNA: Giriraj Singh- the BJP MP from Nawada, infamous for his election speech at Deogarh in Jharkhand on April 18, when he said that those opposing Narendra Modi had no place in India, and should go to Pakistan, finds himself in a rather embarrassing situation, courtesy, a thief.

Police in Patna on Tuesday, 8 July arrested a man who had allegedly burgled the MP’s home a day earlier. The alleged burglar, was caught with a suitcase packed with Rs 1.14 crore in cash, 600 US dollars, two gold chains, a pair of gold earrings, a gold locket, three gold rings, 14 silver coins, and seven luxury watches- all of which he said he had stolen from Singh’s home on Boring Road in west Patna.

However, Singh is believed to have mentioned only a small fraction of this sum and “some jewellery” as having been stolen, when he filed a police complaint on Monday, leading to all kinds of theories about Singh’s actual wealth and assets. 

The Indian Express reports that till late on Tuesday night, neither the MP nor any member of his family had shown up before the police to claim the cash and valuables and the MP’s phone was switched off.

While the burglar, a man called Dinesh Kumar, insists that he stole all the recovered booty from the MP’s house, the BJP is in firefighting mode trying to disown the fortune. The state BJP argued that it must not be assumed that the cash and valuables belonged to Singh until he said so himself. Vijay Kumar Choudhary, a senior minister in the Bihar government, went to the extent of saying that the case would be investigated with a view to establishing the “real owner of the cash”.

In a ripple-effect, the Income-Tax department has already started an inquiry into the recovery. “It is up to the police to investigate and find the owner or owners of the recovered goods,” BJP state president Mangal Pandey said. “Giriraj Singh had talked about the theft of only Rs 50,000 and some jewellery. Police should not believe what the thief says, but probe deeper. If the owner is not claiming the stolen goods, there is no reason why it should be assumed that they belong to him,” Pandey said.

Giriraj Singh who is currently the BJP MP from Nawada, was an MLC (Member of Legislative Council) before being elected to the Lok Sabha. He had declared an election expenditure of Rs 27 lakh. As per Bihar government figures from January 2013, his assets at the time totalled about Rs 75 lakh, which included the market value of his properties in Patna and Begusarai.

Singh was previously the minister for animal husbandry in former Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar’s NDA government until the JD(U) split with the BJP in June 2013. He had always been a vocal supporter of Narendra Modi.

Patna Senior Superintendent of Police Manu Maharaj said Dinesh had committed the theft and disclosed he had stolen all the wealth from the MP’s house. 

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