Bihar poll campaign: Advani assails PM, Sonia
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Last Updated: Tuesday, October 19, 2010, 18:57
Motihari/Muzaffarpur (Bihar): Asserting that central funds did not belong to the Congress, senior BJP leader L K Advani on Tuesday attacked the Prime Minister and the UPA chairperson for their statement on central assistance to Bihar saying they had not done any special favour.

"They should know that central funds do not belong to the Congress. It is hard-earned money of tax payers and people of the country," Advani said without naming Singh and Gandhi.

"There is a federal system in India and in keeping with it, the Centre has to provide funds to states without any discrimination. The federal structure has to be respected at all cost," he said addressing election meetings in Motihari and Muzaffarpur.

It would be better, Advani said, for those raising the issue of central assistance to come forward for an open debate on the issue with Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and senior party leader Arun Jaitley.

Advani defended Nitish Kumar describing him as the most able Chief Minister the state has ever had.

"People have adjudged Kumar as the most able CM the state has ever had," Advani said.

Claiming that the NDA government deserved a reward, he said, Kumar had come up to expectations and aspirations of the people and deserved another term of five years to bring Bihar in the category of the most developed states.

It was expected that Prime Minister Manmohan Singh would see the development in Bihar and praise the work done by Kumar, he said. "But unfortunately it didn't happen."

Showering praise on the chief minister, Advani said Kumar had proved his mettle as railway minister in the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government.

"We expect that the people of the state will repose their faith in Kumar and Sushil Kumar Modi (deputy chief minister) and give another chance to serve them," he said.

Opposing promotion of 'parivarwad (dynastic rule)' in politics and alleging that the RJD was hand-in-glove with the Congress, Advani said "the Congress is equally responsible for the jungle raj and anarchy that gripped the state during the 15-year rule of Lalu Prasad-Rabri Devi."

Advani also criticised the Prime Minister and Congress president Sonia Gandhi for supporting Jammu Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah's statement that the state had not merged with India, "but only acceded to it under certain conditions and under an agreement."

Advani said he was surprised to find remarks of External Affairs Minister in Abdullah's favour and said, "The country will not tolerate two Vidhans (Constitutions) and two Pradhans (heads of government)."

Advani referred to his 59-day Yatra in 1997, on the golden jubilee of India's independence and held the Congress responsible for the ills plaguing the country.

Without naming the RJD and Congress, Advani said the two parties though contesting separately, would join hands after the elections.

The senior BJP leader also utilised the opportunity to renew his demand for holding simultaneous elections to the state assemblies and Lok Sabha and state-funding of elections.

"We should have a system of state-funding for political parties to meet election-related expenses as elections are essentials to the Constitution," he said.

He said he had raised the issue before the Election Commission and the Prime Minister seeking amendment to the Constitution for ensuring that the elections to the assemblies and the Lok Sabha took place simultaneously after completion of their full term of five years.

"Frequent elections waste a lot of money...this year Bihar is going to polls, next to follow is West Bengal and some other states...a lot of money goes waste," he said.


First Published: Tuesday, October 19, 2010, 18:57

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