RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav today mounted a scathing attack on Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar for including “tainted” people in his ministry after breaking the Grand Alliance despite his public protestations about zero tolerance to corruption. Seizing upon a survey which claimed 75 per cent of ministers in the new Nitish Kumar government had criminal cases pending against them, Tejashwi, leader of the opposition in the Bihar Assembly, said the CBI FIR against him was merely an “excuse” for the JD(U) chief to walk out of the alliance.
“Nitish Kumar used a CBI FIR against me as an excuse to break the Grand Alliance as he had an understanding with the BJP from the very beginning and was moving step-by-step to form a coalition government,” Yadav, son of RJD supremo Lalu Prasad told reporters in Patna.
Yadav, who was Kumar’s deputy in the previous government, demanded, tongue in cheek, that the new government enact a law to bar all people against whom FIRs have been registered from contesting elections.
He said both Kumar and Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Kumar Modi were “tainted” as cases were pending against them. Yadav said while Kumar was an accused in the murder case of Sitaram Singh during the 1991 Lok Sabha elections which he was contesting from Barh, Modi had 3-4 FIRs against him.
Association for Democratic Reforms, an NGO working for electoral and political reform, had recently come out with a survey report which said 75 per cent of ministers in the current Nitish Kumar government were facing criminal cases. According to the report, as many as 22 ministers out of 29 had cases against them.
Making fun of Kumar who had said he exited the Grand Alliance after listening to his “antaratma” (inner voice), Yadav asked,”How many times your inner voice sleeps and wakes up? Isn’t it ‘kursi atma’ (a soul seeking chair) or ‘lalchi atma’ (a greedy soul)?”
While attacking Kumar, Yadav reminded him of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s remark questioning his DNA during the 2015 Bihar Assembly elections.
“From chanting ‘hey Ram’ he has turned to chanting ‘Jai Sri Ram’ (a slogan popular with the Hindu right and votaries of construction of a Ram temple in Ayodhya),” he said.
Referring to accusations of dynastic politics against his father Lalu Prasad, Yadav wanted to know why Union minister Ram Vilas Paswan’s younger brother Pashupati Kumar Paras was inducted into the new government by Kumar despite not being a member of either of the two chambers of the state legislature.
The RJD leader said his party would soon hold meetings across the state to tell people about how Kumar betrayed the mandate people had given to the Grand Alliance.