Patna, Sept. 15: The RJD today took a dig at chief minister Nitish Kumar while criticising the BJP and its prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi.
Lalu Prasad, the RJD chief, charged Nitish with working under a design to “split the secular votes”. He also dubbed Modi “a mask of the RSS”.
After flagging off the Bedari Muhim Rath (brotherhood campaign “car”) to Muslim-dominated districts, Lalu said: “These people hate the minorities and want to disturb the communal harmony of the country. The season of festivals is coming and the BJP is trying to communalise the atmosphere of the country through public meetings.”
The rath with a group of Muslim RJD leaders, including MLC Anwar Ahmad, on-board would travel through Begusrai, Khagaria, Katihar and some other districts. They would address a series of public meetings in the Muslim-dominated pockets to “reveal the evil design by fascist forces against the minorities”.
The RJD is weary of Muslim voters deserting it after Nitish parted ways with the BJP. The campaign in Muslim-dominated areas is apparently aimed at dissuading the minority community people from switching sides. In a bid to keep his support base intact, Lalu took swipes at both Modi and Nitish.
Taking a dig at Nitish, Lalu said the state machinery was weak and incapable of tackling tricky situations because honest and secular officers were not posted in the field. “Transfers and posting are being made with sights set on the Lok Sabha polls,” he said.
Stressing that there was a plan to split the secular votes in Bihar, Lalu said Nitish was with the NDA when Gujarat was burning in 2002.
“At the behest of Modi, Nitish, then railway minister, did not even order a probe into the burning of a coach of Sabarmati Express. The then Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee wanted to oust Modi, but (Lal Krishna) Advaniji opposed him. Nitish remained a mute spectator to this. Nitish gave the BJP an opportunity to expand itself in Bihar. The RSS held a camp at Gandhi Maidan. I stopped one rath of Advani. Nitish flagged off another from here,” Lalu said.