Minority Affairs Minister Abdul Gafoor and RJD MLA from Raghunathpur Harishankar Yadav paid a visit to Shahabuddin in Siwan jail on Sunday.

The photograph of the three in the jail has gone viral on social media. Lodged in Siwan jail since 2005 in several cases of murder and kidnapping, Shahabuddin has been convicted by Siwan court in eight cases and was sentenced to life in two.

Siwan Jail Superintendent Radheshyam Suman confirmed the meeting but said no norms were violated. The BJP, however, sought to use this to attack Nitish Kumar government.

Senior BJP leader Sushil Kumar Modi demanded immediate dismissal of the minister Abdul Gafoor, who belongs to RJD.

"A message has gone to public that people like Mohammad Shahabuddin and Nawada MLA Raj Ballabh Yadav, who is evading arrest in the rape case of a minor girl in Nalanda, enjoy state patronage," Sushil Modi told reporters.

"It's a known fact that if RJD president Lalu Prasad wished, Raj Ballabh Yadav would have surrendered within 24 hours. Nitish Kumar is the Chief Minister but due to 81 legislators of RJD, he does not have the guts to touch the MLAs and leaders of Lalu Prasad's party," Modi cited.

Prasad, however, said it was not a big issue. "When I was in jail, people used to meet me and they were given some snacks. So what's so big if minister Abdul Gafoor went to meet  Shahabuddin and ate with him?" he said.

Prasad said BJP did not have any issue against the grand secular alliance and hence raising irrelevant matters. Prasad's son and Deputy Chief Minister Tejaswi Yadav said he was not aware of the incident.

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