Patna: BJP prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi on Wednesday emphasised on a special economic plan to bring Bihar and other eastern states lagging behind in development on par with western states for balanced growth of the nation.
Replying to tea seller Gopal Prasad Yadav from here during his `Chai pe charcha` (discussion over a cup of tea) programme this evening, Modi said "If one arm is paralysed the body cannot be called healthy and likewise if some part of the country is left behind in development the nation`s health cannot be good.
"When we see a map of India we find that while western states are developed, the eastern part of the country like Bihar, West Bengal, Odisha, Assam and Northeast have been lagging behind …
There is an urgent need to establish a balance between west and east," he said amid claps from people gathered at the tea stall of Yadav, a former national swimmer.
In a remark apparently directed at his rivals Lalu Prasad and Nitish Kumar, Modi blamed the poor condition of Bihar on politics in the state in the last 20 years.
"Abounding in natural resources, Bihar is not poor, but misgovernance due to a different kind of politics played in the last 20 years is ruining it," he said.
He said if he received a chance his government would formulate a special plan to bring the eastern states on the same level as the western states.
Of the 36 tea stalls selected for Modi`s discussion, 15 were from Patna.
Leader of Opposition Nand Kishore Yadav, state BJP President Mangal Pandey, former minister Giriraj Singh and MLA Rameshwar Chaurasia were at the tea stall at the time of the discussion.
Gopal Yadav, who participated in national swimming competition for three consecutive years from 1988, has been running a tea stall since 1990 after he failed to get a job with the state government on the sports quota.