Issue of participation at Centre a reason for leaving BJP: Nitish

Issue of participation at Centre a reason for leaving BJP: Nitish

Patna: Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar addresses mediapersons in Patna on Friday, August 12, 2022. (Photo:IANS)

Patna, Aug 12 (IANS) Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar slammed the Narendra Modi government on Friday and said that the issue of equal participation at the Centre was one of the reasons for separation with the BJP in the state. "When the 2019 Lok Sabha election ended and Narendra Modi formed the government at the Centre, at that time the JD-U had 16 MPs and the BJP had 17 MPs from Bihar in the Lok Sabha. We demanded at least 4 cabinet ministers at the Centre but the BJP refused. I told them that the BJP has 17 MPs from Bihar and is giving ministerial berths to 5 MPs and allotting the JD-U just 1. Hence, we refused to take a ministry at the Centre," Kumar said. "I told them (BJP top leadership) you are making five MPs from Bihar union ministers and offering one to us, what would you want to create (communal atmosphere) in Bihar," Kumar told the BJP. "During the 2020 assembly elections, we helped the BJP candidates to win and they have not given support to us. Those JD-U candidates who lost the 2020 assembly election said that due to the BJP workers campaigning against them, they lost the election. Even those who won said that BJP workers did not support them. The BJP during the 2020 assembly election back-stabbed us," Kumar said. Reacting to RCP Singh, Kumar said: "I gave my seat of national president to that man and see what he did with us. He started anti-party activities. I authorised him to negotiate with the BJP during the second expansion of the Narendra Modi government and he put the party interest aside and became a union minister on his own. I never allowed him to take just one ministerial berth at the Centre. At that time, I decided to give him just 6 months and then he would be dumped." "When he became a union minister, I asked him to give the national president post to Lalan Singh," Kumar said. "What was his (RCP Singh) status, I kept him in the ministry at the Centre and when I came to Bihar as chief minister, I brought him and made him secretary. I sent him to the Rajya Sabha twice and see what he did. He was involved in anti-party activities and was working for the BJP. I gave him huge respect and he is making inappropriate and objectionable statements against me. My party workers are pained when they see his objectionable statements," Kumar said. Reacting to Sushil Modi's allegation of not providing him Z plus security despite being deputy chief minister of Bihar for 12 years, Kumar said Modi's allegation was baseless. "We have given him whatever he wants. Even after the 2020 assembly election, I wanted him to stay in Bihar and become the deputy chief minister again but his party brought him to Delhi. I was thinking that he might get an important responsibility (ministerial berth) at the Centre but his party sidelined him. Now he is levelling allegations against me. I never mind his allegations. His party might take notice of the statements he is making against me. I would be happy if he would get some role in the central government," Kumar added.

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