Nitish & Paswan to share dais

Patna: Union minister of consumer affairs, food and public distribution Ram Vilas Paswan and chief minister Nitish Kumar will share the stage together to celebrate the birth anniversary of former Prime Minister Vishwanath Pratap Singh at Rabindra Bhavan on Monday.

Rashtra Sewa Mission, led by Jitendra Neeraj, a social worker associated with the JDU, is organising the function.

The coming together of Paswan and Nitish at the function assumes importance, as the former had attacked RJD chief Lalu Prasad and the chief minister on earlier occasions for forgetting VP Singh.

In 2015, while attending a function in June 2015, Paswan had said it was the great contribution of former Prime Minister VP Singh, who had implemented the Mandal commission report. Riding on Mandal politics, both Lalu and Nitish got prominence in national politics but these leaders have no time to remember V.P. Singh.

Sources said though the function is being organised by Rashtra Sewa Mission, both the parties have asked their office-bearers to attend the function. LJP state general secretary and party state spokesperson Shravan Agarwal said: "Senior party leaders have been asked to participate in the function. JDU leaders and office-bearers have been asked to take part in the function."

Paswan called former Prime Minister V.P. Singh as "Mandal messiah", as he had implemented the Mandal Commission report, which provided reservation to people from the backward sections in government jobs.

VP, in national politics, is known for ushering a fundamental change in socio-political landscape through his decision implementing the Mandal Commission report which provided reservation to Other Backward Castes (OBC) and Extremely Backward Classes (EBC) communities in the 1990s.

He founded the Janata Dal (JD) in 1988. Using JD as a cornerstone, he brought several anti-Congress parties under a single umbrella in a nationwide Opposition coalition called the National Front (NF), which contested general parliamentary elections in November 1989 and became Prime Minister.

Sources said both chief minister Nitish Kumar and Paswan on several occasions have recalled VP Singh's contribution in national politics, especially empowering the backward castes.

Paswan on several occasions had recalled VP Singh's contribution, claiming that a portrait of BR Ambedkar, the architect of the Constitution, was put up in Parliament only in 1989, when VP Singh was Prime Minister.


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