| Rural works minister Bhim Singh at the news meet in Patna on Friday. Picture by Nagendra Kumar Singh |
Patna, Jan. 17: The JD(U) fears that the BJP would poach the franchise of Extremely Backward Classes (EBC), the votebank of Nitish Kumar that has kept him in power for the past eight years.
The party is now attacking the BJP’s move to celebrate the birth anniversary of former chief minister Karpoori Thakur, who was an EBC leader.
JD(U) national general secretary and rural works minister Bhim Singh today said: “BJP does not have any moral right to celebrate the birth anniversary of Jan Nayak Karpoori Thakur, who always represented the EBC. BJP was the party, which always criticised and spoke against the EBC. It has never followed Karpooriji’s ideology.”
BJP has already announced the celebration of Thakur’s birth anniversary at SK Memorial Hall on January 22 in which party national president Rajnath Singh would take part. Singh would address the EBC workers from all 38 districts.
The BJP leadership in the state has already started projecting its prime ministerial candidate, Narendra Modi, as an EBC person to win them over. EBCs comprise around 26 per cent of the population.
Singh said the BJP always stood against the EBC and it was Nitish Kumar who has done excellent work for the section of the people. “The BJP has never done anything for the backward community and it only had demolished the Janata Party government in 1977 when Karpooriji came to power. Over the years, they have been anti-EBC and suddenly, they have started thinking about them.”
He also alleged that the BJP never backed any welfare scheme for the EBCs and Mahadalits. “By celebrating the birth anniversary of Karpooriji, they are creating a false notion that they think about EBC. In reality, it is Nitish Kumar who has done a lot to uplift the condition of the EBCs and Mahadalits in the state,” said Singh.
By breaking the BJP alliance, Nitish has tried hard to get the Muslim-EBC-Mahadalit votes that together make up around 55 per cent of the state’s total votes, which would be very crucial for him in the general election.
Citing another example, Singh said it was the BJP that openly came forward against reservation when V.P. Singh formed the government in 1990. “The BJP protested against reservation and put communal agenda on the front seat. Sushil Kumar Modi or any other BJP leader has not done social justice to the EBCs.”
Nitish has showed his aggressiveness and extra care for the EBCs and Mahadalits by ensuring their enhanced participation in power through reservation in local bodies.
Singh also took a dig at RJD chief Lalu Prasad on his Twitter debut. “He just wants to be in the news and that’s why he has opened the Twitter account. However, I am sure that he does not know how to handle it and I challenge him that he cannot spell the spelling of Twitter,” he said.