Patna: Slamming the Centre for rejecting his demand for granting special status to Bihar, Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Friday demanded that Centre constitute a fresh committee of experts to look into the demand.
Talking to reporters here before leaving for New Delhi, Kumar said the Centre should also frame new criteria for granting special state status.
"We are making a just demand and it should be considered by the new expert committee," he said.
Kumar said "There is sufficient base for meeting Bihar`s demand for special state status - a demand of the common people of Bihar."
He said signatures of more than 1.5 crore people in support of the demand had already been submitted to the Centre.
"We had accepted that the committee which was previously looking into the demand will make the recommendations keeping in mind the poverty and backwardness," Kumar said adding the panel looked into other aspects and Bihar is not a hilly state.
The chief minister said the talks over the issue with the Centre would not be closed and "we will continue our fight to achieve the special state category."
If the Centre didn`t concede to the demand soon, "we will chalk out programme by taking people from Patna to Delhi," Kumar said adding he would soon write a letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to press for the demand.
In a major blow to Bihar government`s efforts, an inter-ministerial group of Centre had rejected Bihar`s demand for special status.
The group was constituted to look into the demand for granting special status to state.