The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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BJP faces Assam fire

New Delhi, Dec. 5: A day after the euphoria of the Assembly poll sweep, the BJP and its allies today faced brickbats from the Opposition in Parliament over the ethnic strife in Assam, reports our special correspondent.

Basudeb Acharia of the CPM kicked off the discussion after question hour when he blamed the Centre’s “faulty policies” for the “growing provincialism and chauvinism”. Faulty recruitment policies and creation of new railway zones, he said, were among the reasons for the trouble.

The Samata Party’s Prabhunath Singh jumped to the defence of his party colleague and railway minister Nitish Kumar, who has been under attack for allowing Group D recruitment in Guwahati that triggered the strife. Singh absolved Kumar of any wrongdoing. Instead, he targeted Rashtriya Janata Dal chief Laloo Prasad Yadav for visiting Assam and accusing the Centre of not providing paramilitary forces. “This kind of connivance will not work,” he said.

Singh also expressed concern that neither the Prime Minister nor his deputy was present in the House during such a serious discussion.

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