Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Saturday (October 8) voiced his disapproval of the CBI charge sheet against RJD president Lalu Prasad, his new ally, in a case pertaining to the latter’s tenure as Railway Minister.
Talking to reporters in Patna before leaving for Sitab Diyara, birthplace of Jayaprakash Narayan on the occasion of the socialist leader’s death anniversary, Kumar also lambasted the BJP for trying to put him in the dock over the Patna High Court order quashing quotas for OBCs and EBCs in urban local body polls.
“You all may recall what happened about five years ago which caused me to walk out of the alliance,” said Kumar, with his deputy and Prasad’s son Tejashwi Yadav by his side, whose name had cropped up in another case which had led the JD(U) leader to snap ties with the RJD.
“Nothing came of that case. Now that I am back in the alliance a new thing has started. Is this the way? (yeh koi tarika hai). It seems they are acting upon whims and fancies,” said the CM, now in the “Mahagathbandhan”, indirectly referring to the allegation of political vendetta through probe agencies, often levelled against the BJP government at the Centre.
Kumar was responding to queries about CBI officials disclosing on Friday that a charge sheet has been filled against 14 people including the RJD supremo, his wife and former CM Rabri Devi and eldest daughter Misa Bharti who is a Rajya Sabha MP.
Kumar, who is the longest serving Chief Minister of Bihar, was also asked about the BJP squarely blaming him for the Patna High Court’s adverse judgment which has put a spanner in the long overdue municipal polls.
“They are uttering falsehoods (galat bol rahe hai),” said Kumar, pointing out that the states system of quotas for OBCs and EBCs in the polls had been in place for over a decade and had been previously upheld by the High Court as well as the Supreme Court.
“They (BJP) are also trying to escape their responsibility. For the entire period that I had an alliance with them, the urban development portfolio remained with them. I wonder whether they have become hostile towards the OBCs,” said the wily leader.
“We will appeal against the order which relied on Supreme Court directions for reservations in some other states. We will underscore that in Bihar, elections have been held in the past under the quota system we had. Categorisation of OBCs and EBCs, wherein Muslims too are covered, was done way back in the 1970s when our mentor Karpoori Thakur was the CM,” he added.
(With inputs from agencies)