Prashant Kishor digs in his heels, makes it clear he won’t give up CAB stance

JD(U) Vice President Prashant Kishor expressed his dipleasure that his party extended support to the Citizenship Amendment Bill, 2019 in his tweets. Photo: PTI

Isolated within his own party after opposing the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, JD(U) national vice-president Prashant Kishor on Thursday(December 12) dug in his heels, asserting that the legislation could help the government “systematically discriminate and even prosecute” people on the basis of religion.

In a fresh tweet that he ended tellingly with the hashtag “NotGivingUp”, Kishor sought to dismiss the contention that the Bill aimed “to grant citizenship and not to take it from
anyone”.

JD(U) headed by Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar has sought to defend its support to the Bill in both Houses of the Parliament on the basis of this assertion despite misgivings that it might adversely affect Muslims.

Kishor’s anti-CAB comments had no takers within the party. JD(U) national general secretary Pavan K Varma, who had voiced disagreement on supporting CAB after the party voted in favour of it in the Lok Sabha, urging Kumar to “reconsider” the stand in the Rajya Sabha, has since not made any new comment on the issue.

Also read: Cracks widen in JD(U)-BJP ties as Nitish goes after Sangh in Bihar

Bihar minister Sanjay Jha, a close aide of the CM, and state JD(U) president and Rajya Sabha MP Vashishth Narayan Singh backed the party stand and discarded dissents as
“personal opinions.”

Since Monday(December 9), when the Bill was tabled in Parliament by Union Home Minister Amit Shah, Kishor has been taking to Twitter to express his disappointment with the party’s decision to back the legislation holding that it was against the party’s commitment to secularism and Gandhian ideals.

On Wednesday(December 11), when crucial support of the JD(U)’s six MPs helped BJP getting the bill passed in the Rajya Sabha, Kishor reminded the party of its victory in the 2015 assembly polls which it had fought in alliance with Lalu Prasad’s RJD and Congress and Kumar had vowed to make a “Sangh-mukt Bharat”.

Also read: Citizenship Bill forces JD(U), Sena to speak in two voices

Meanwhile, JD(U) spokesman and state minister Neeraj Kumar came out with a bristling riposte to Kishor, whom he did not mention by name.

“Nitish is secular in thought and deed and his persona is spotless like a mirror. Be under no illusions, voting statistics speak volumes about his popularity. The votes garnered by JD (U) rose to 89.02 lakh in the Lok Sabha polls this year, up from the 64.17 lakh tally of 2015. It was a jump of 39 per cent. Kindly update your knowledge,” Neeraj Kumar tweeted.

After extending his service to Jagan Mohan Reddy of the YSR Congress in Andhra Pradesh, Kishor is now working for Mamata Banerjee’s TMC, which is bitterly opposed to the BJP, thereby often causing strains in the saffron party’s relationship with the JD(U).

Get breaking news and latest updates from India
and around the world on thefederal.com
FOLLOW US: