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Dal pulls strings for status

Patna, July 8: JD(U) leader and member of Bihar Legislative Council Mahachandra Prasad Singh today said the demand for a special category status for Bihar was genuine and the Centre cannot ignore the demand because the state fulfils all the parameters to fit the bill.

Singh presented his view while addressing reporters at his official residence today.

The central government does not have any rights to ignore the demand for a special category status to Bihar. Many other states have got the special status according to the 1969 Gadgil formula. The special status can be given to all those states, which falls under parameters like, backwardness, financial constrains, power consumption and geographical structure, said Mahachandra.

He added: With this regard, Bihar covers all these parameters. According to the government survey, the per capita income of Bihar is Rs 7,875 whereas other states, which have already got the special status like Himachal Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Sikkim, Tripura and Uttarakhand have Rs 33,905, Rs 26,211, Rs 25,412, Rs 24,406 and Rs 24,585 per capita income respectively. This is way ahead than Bihar.

Speaking on the second and third parameters, Mahachandra said: As far as power consumption is concerned, Bihar is again on the last footsteps of the stairs. The third parameter is again very important. The geographical structure of the state is very dangerous.

Mahachandra added: Under the leadership of chief minister Nitish Kumar, the JD(U) started a signature campaign and till now the party has collected more than one crore signatures in its last phase. The signatures are not only of common men of the state but also of advocates, teachers, philosophers and academicians, who support the objective of a special status to the state.

On July 10, JD(U) state president Vashisht Narayan Singh will visit Delhi where the signatures will be submitted to President Pratibha Patil on July 13.

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