JP’s ‘aatma’ won’t tolerate corruption: Goa Guv on Lalu’s arrest

The architect of the movement against the national emergency in the 1970s, Jayaprakash Narayan’s (JP) soul will never tolerate corruption, Goa Governor P.S. Sreedharan Pillai said on Thursday, while commenting on the recent conviction of former Bihar Chief Minister Lalu Prasad in a fodder scam-related case.

The biggest achievement of the Central government over the last 80 months was the absence of any corruption-related allegations against its members, Pillai said, adding that the intolerance to corruption at the highest level will spread to the lower levels of governance.

“…about 40 years ago, I was also a student leader during the Emergency in 1975-77. I was the in-charge of JP movement’s student wing as a college student. I also participated in the protests against emergency and corruption. At that time one of the major leaders of the JP movement in Bihar was Lalu Prasad Yadav,” he told the media.

“A champion of the anti-corruption movement, now he (Yadav) is convicted in five courts. He is in his 70s and will be spending his time in jail. That is a thought provoking thing on my mind. When people elected him and gave him the responsibility, what happened in Bihar is a lesson to be studied by people who are preferring and interested in democracy,” the Governor said.

He added that the absence of corruption in the upper hierarchy of power at the Centre over the past 80 months would soon spread to the lower levels, suggesting that Lalu’s conviction was symptomatic of the effect.

Pillai said over the last 80 months, “not even a single FIR (has been filed) against MLAs, Ministers, any of their staff, no such untoward incident is reported legally.”

“Allegation is different, anybody can make allegations against political opponents. But no such things… I am not going into the politics of the Union government or anybody, but that is a good sign, without corruption, that is good for the country,” he added.

“(In) the higher-ups, if there is no corruption, slowly that will spread to the lower levels of the political arena, that will be a good sign which is why the former Bihar Chief Minister ought to have been a good follower of Jayaprakash Narayan. Instead of that, JP’s ‘aatma’ (soul) will not tolerate corruption,” he said.

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