Other States

Bee invasion invites FIR and inquiry

Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati waves to supporters at the party office in Lucknow, on Wednesday. She alleged that a beehive near the rally ground was disturbed in a bid to trigger a stampede.

Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati waves to supporters at the party office in Lucknow, on Wednesday. She alleged that a beehive near the rally ground was disturbed in a bid to trigger a stampede.   | Photo Credit: Ajay Kumar Singh

The swarm of hyperactive bees that buzzed around the stage during the Bahujan Samaj Party's silver jubilee celebrations on March 15 have brought in their wake an FIR as well as an inquiry report.

While the FIR was lodged late on Wednesday night, the inquiry report is believed to have been submitted to the State government by the DIG of Lucknow, Rajeev Krishna. The bees, which incessantly hovered around the dais when the Chief Minister was making her speech, disappeared once the rally was over.

Sensing an “opposition conspiracy” in the invasion, the Chief Minister ordered a probe into the incident, handing over its charge to Mr. Krishna.

Although sources said that Mr. Krishna submitted his report to the government on Thursday, State Home Secretary Mahesh Gupta refused to confirm its receipt. He also pleaded ignorance on the time-frame for conducting the probe.

The Lucknow police are understood to have claimed in the FIR that about one lakh bees were let loose by the “conspirators,” adding that the insects were unusually energetic and appeared to have been sourced from the wild. The FIR, filed by a sub-inspector at the Aashiana police station, followed a preliminary inquiry by the police, which is said to have traced the invasion to a bush-fire near the campus of Baba Saheb Bhimrao Ambedkar Central University. The police visited the institution on Wednesday.

Police sources claimed that a beehive was in the bush, and miscreants started the fire with the intention of causing mayhem at the rally.

They said that if the bees had attacked the people assembled for the rally, there would have been chaos with the possibility of even deaths from a stampede. Other reports, however, said that the police were unable to locate the remains of the burnt beehive.

Meanwhile, authorities at the central university denied that the bush fire originated on the campus.

Aide pays the price

The currency garlands controversy claimed its first high-profile victim on Thursday as Ms. Mayawati shunted out Additional Cabinet Secretary and Principal Secretary (Information) Vijay Shanker Pandey purportedly for the failure to check “adverse publicity.”

The acceptance of currency garlands by Ms. Mayawati has brought the BSP here under the scanner of the Income Tax Department.

The spokesperson of the Karnataka unit of the BSP, Y. N. Sharma, has already been expelled from the party for leaking information to the press about the maker of the much talked-about garlands whose value has been estimated from several lakhs to several crores.

Mr. Pandey has been sent out to the Medical and Health Department as Principal Secretary

Mr. Pandey, till recently the blue-eyed boy of Ms. Mayawati, was in charge of overseeing the Chief Minister's publicity and that of the government.

However, the publicity the currency garlands generated, which resulted in the issue figuring in Parliament in a big way, appears to have boomeranged on the Mayawati government and the ruling party.

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Printable version | Jul 31, 2020 2:54:08 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/Bee-invasion-invites-FIR-and-inquiry/article16576766.ece

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