Patna: Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Monday candidly confessed that he had initially opposed the bifurcation of Bihar, but gave in after the then NDA government made a commitment to compensate Bihar for economic losses arising out of creation of Jharkhand.
"I was initially opposed to the bifurcation of Bihar not only due to long association of the people of the two states, but also for economic losses to Bihar after carving out of Jharkhand," he said at function here.
Kumar said he withdrew his opposition after the NDA government made a provision in the Bihar Reorganisation Act, 2000, to create a cell in the Planning Commission to provide special assistance to Bihar to compensate it for losses arising out of creation of Jharkhand.
Jharkhand has always been a lucrative place in view of abundance of natural resources which fostered economic activities and industrialisation, besides development of infrastructure, educational institutions and related sectors, he said.
"I still maintain that the bifurcation of the state was a little too premature," Kumar said.
Even the state government in the erstwhile united Bihar heavily invested in Jharkhand districts and gave further impetus to development there which attracted people from the state and elsewhere in the country to seek job and prosperity there, he added.
Observing that Jharkhand`s evolution as a developed state was a continuous process, Nitish Kumar said that the resource-rich state has yet to make a mark as a stable region due to a host of problems and divergence of aspirations of the people.
He suggested that Jharkhand needs to address social conflict and create a sense of unity among the people among the indigenous and settlers to find political stability and good governance in its endeavour for progress.
A social movement to unify the people should be undertaken in Jharkhand to synchronize their aspirations, he said.