| Venue challenge |
BJP’s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi would increase the frequency of his visits to Bihar.
After a rally in Muzaffarpur on March 3, he will address another one in Purnea on March 10, state BJP president Mangal Pandey said.
Pandey added that Modi will address a Hunkar Rally in Purnea and he expected the crowd to turn out in lakhs. Purnea comes in the Seemanchal area of Bihar where the BJP has been doing well by winning at least three of the four Lok Sabha seats. The area has a substantial Muslim population and elections witness division of votes on a communal line — going in advantage for three of the four districts in the region.
However, the wrangling over allotment of venue in Muzaffarpur continued. The district administration of Muzaffarpur allotted the Awasiya ground, which is relatively small. The BJP is pressing for the allocation of the adjoining Police Lines ground, which is larger. Pandey appealed to the chief minister to intervene and ask the administration to allot the larger venue.
Leader of the Opposition in the Assembly Nand Kishore Yadav accused the state government of creating hurdles whenever Narendra Modi visits Bihar.
He said the Awasiya field would be able to accommodate only 20,000 people. He added that the Police Lines ground was at least six times larger. Yadav accused the Nitish government of trying to create hurdles and said a stampede-like situation may arise if the rally was held at a smaller venue. He added that even during the Hunkar Rally on October 27 in Gandhi Maidan the administration had initially said the BJP would get just half the ground.
BJP leader Sushil Kumar Modi said Union finance minister P. Chidambaram has squeezed the poor to improve India’s rating. He added that the fiscal deficit has been brought down from 4.8 per cent to 4.6 per cent by slashing down over Rs 80,000-crore fund given to the state to improve infrastructure.