Nitish Kumar trains guns on Lalu Yadav, young leaders
Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar on Saturday took a swipe at his bete noire Lalu Prasad by questioning whether during the 15 years of RJD rule the government did anything for the upliftment of women except for anointing his wife on the chief ministerial chair.
Nitish also took an apparent dig at RJD’s Tejashwi Yadav and LJP chief Chirag Paswan, without taking any names, saying that “those even having no knowledge of alphabets of politic are making statements against me day and night to gain publicity”.
“Let them take publicity, I don’t bother because I believe in working and not making speeches for the sake of publicity,” he said at rallies in Nabinagar in Aurangabad and Dinara in neighbouring Rohtas district.
On Saturday, he held public meetings at Nabinagar, Nokha, Karaghar and ended at Dinara in Rohtas district.
Making special mention of condition of women during the two regimes, Nitish asked “while the leader at that time installed wife on the chair (of CM) but did he do anything for welfare of the females?”
RJD president Lalu, who became chief minister in 1990, had made his wife Rabri Devi take the seat when he went to jail in 1997 in connection with the multi-crore fodder scam case. Her tenure even exceeds that of Lalu’s seven years.
Highlighting work done for women during his 15 years at the helm, Nitish said while girls were inspired to pursue studies through bicycle yojana, 50 per cent of seats in the panchayats and urban local bodies were reserved for women.
The state government has also earmarked 35 per cent of jobs for women in police and other state government services. “Does any state have more number of women in the police force than Bihar?” he asked the crowd.
Nitish also made reference to the JEEVIKA programme which provides easy finance to women self-help groups. “We had planned to enrol 10 lakh women through SHGs but the number has increased to 1.2 crore now,” he said at a rally in Dinara in favour of state minister and JDU nominee Jai Kumar Singh.
He also mentioned providing Rs 10,000 assistance to girls clearing plus Class XII exam and Rs 25,000 to those completing graduation. He said the assistance would be increased to Rs 25,000 and Rs 50,000 respectively, if his government returns to power.
Nitish highlighted the bad law and order situation during the RJD rule and cited latest figures of the National Crime Records Bureau which placed Bihar on 23rd position in terms of crime now.
He said while they believe in working for the people, the history of the opponents makes it clear that they work only for their wife, sons and children. “Due to this greed of working only for self, they are behind the bars,” he said, adding that “some more will follow the suit”.
Nitish heaped rich praise on the Centre for assisting the development of Bihar and caring for its people.“Prime Minister Narendra Modi government is providing free foodgrains to the poor from March to November in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic. He also gave Rs 6,000 assistance to farmers,” he said.
He said if voted to power, the state and the central government would further step up efforts to see Bihar stand among the frontline states.