Patna: Political parties are trying to
outdo each other to woo minority votes in Bihar ahead of the
assembly polls due later this year.
With differences within the NDA not yet settled,
senior JD(U) leader and Chief Minister Nitish Kumar has taken
up on himself to woo the Muslim votes.
Last week at the Pasmanda Muslim Adhikar Sammelan,
Kumar spoke of the affirmative steps, including educational
infrastructure for students, taken by the NDA government for
Muslims in Bihar.
Kumar said that his government had restored the powers
of the state Madarsa Board to grant recognition to over 2000
madarsas in the state to make them eligible for grants and
Targetting the votes of Pasmanda Muslims, comprising
nearly 50 per cent of the population of the minority
community in the state, Chief Minister said the UPA government
was creating impediment to the state government`s plans for
the welfare of Muslims.
The non-implementation of the RS Sachchar and Rangnath
Mishra committees` reports were a reflection of the Centre`s
designs to deny Muslims their due rights, he alleged.
The Chief Minister`s bid to cosy up with the minority
community did not go down well with his political adversaries,
the RJD and the Congress, who questioned his secular
credentials for his and his party`s long association with the
BJP at the national level and in Bihar.
RJD leaders Ram Kripal Yadav and Shakeel Ahmed Khan
lashed out at Kumar claiming that his secular image was a
The RJD leaders also held Kumar responsible for the
sale of the Regional Handloom Cooperative union`s building at
Biharsharif at an auction recently in lieu of the accumulated
dues of Rs 3.70 lakh rendering 50 lakh weavers of 11 districts
If the state government was at all serious to cater to
the needs of the weavers, it could have paid the due from its
own coffers and adjusted it against their arrears, the RJD
The Congress too did not remain far behind in taking
on the Chief Minister and raked up the advertisement showing
him with his Gujarat counterpart Narendra Modi to buttress its
Not to be left far behind, the BJP too would like to
endear itself to the minority community by holding a political
programme exclusively for the Muslims, the state unit party
President CP Thakur had announced last week.