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War of words erupt over agro concern

Patna, Aug. 29: Charges and counter charges between Union and state ministers have become the order of the day.

Two days after Union minister for consumer affairs, food and public distribution Ram Vilas Paswan accused the Bihar government with failure to lift foodgrain for the BPL (below poverty line) population, it was Union agriculture minister Radha Mohan Singh’s turn to take pot shots at the Jitan Ram Manjhi government.

Speaking to party MLAs at the BJP office today, Radha Mohan said it was impossible for farmers to progress under the Manjhi government, as it had returned Rs 800 crore meant for developing agriculture in the state.

“We want to work for every farmer in every field. But this is not possible if Lalu Prasad and Nitish Kumar are in power,” he said.

Paswan’s charges were refuted by state food minister Shyam Rajak, who alleged that the Union minister was misquoting facts.

Paswan also criticised the chief minister on Thursday for skipping the function to launch the Prime Minister’s Jan Dhan Yojana.

“It is the start of a war of words between the Centre and Bihar governments, which will go on right till the next Assembly elections,” said a BJP leader.

The BJP legislators also blamed the state government for increased prices of essential items as it had failed to carry out any raids against hoarders under the Essential Commodities Act.

They, however, claimed that within 100 days, the Union government had taken several positive initiatives like the funds for the Buddha Circuit, Mega Textile Park in Bhagalpur, IIM in Bihar and others.

BJP leaders like Sushil Kumar Modi, Nand Kishore Yadav and others also expressed concern over the increase in crime in Bihar.

They appealed to BJP MLAs and workers not to be demoralised by the bypoll results and said the countdown for the Bihar government had began.