Patna: A fact-finding team of ruling JD(U) that visited the village in Saran district where mid-day meal tragedy left 23 children dead, on Tuesday backed Chief Minister Nitish Kumar`s conspiracy theory behind the incident.
"It is a clear cut case of conspiracy to destabilise the government," state JD(U) chief Bashist Narayan Singh told reporters here in a veiled attack on RJD.
Singh was a member of the team that visited Dharmasati Gandaman village yesterday.
"Children were lured to come to the school in the name of distribution of free books on that day so that casualty is maximum," alleged RCP Singh, JD(U) Rajya Sabha MP and another member of the team.
The conspiracy had two motives - defame JD(U) government by killing a large number of children and provoke villagers to attack JD(U) leaders if they visit the place after the tragedy, he claimed.
The two leaders claimed the families of victims they met and villagers spoke of the conspiracy angle and demanded stringent punishment to the culprits.
They said while JD(U) workers were busy helping victims after the tragedy, the opposition, as part of the plot, were busy organising bandh and attacking policemen and torching police vehicles.
JD(U) MLC Mahachandra Prasad Singh said the quantity of poison was so much in the food that children fell unconscious within two minutes of eating the midday meal.
Deputed by the Chief Minister, the team also comprised party MP Arjun Rai, MLC Raj Kishore Kushwaha and former minister Ramnath Thakur.
The leaders said the team has briefed the chief minister about their visit to the village.
Addressing party leaders yesterday, Kumar had talked of conspiracy behind the midday meal tragedy and alleged that BJP and RJD had a "secret understanding" to derive political mileage from the incident.