Lalu dares Nitish to contest Bihar Assembly polls



Patna: RJD president Lalu Prasad on Wednesday dared Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar to contest the coming Assembly polls in the state saying he was wary of facing the electorate as he had failed on all fronts.

"Kumar's reluctance to contest the polls was also because the Muslim brethern in the state have decided not to vote for NDA since he shook hands with Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi who is an RSS poster boy," he said.

Kumar, who is a member of the Legislative Council, had said earlier this month that he was unlikely to contest the Assembly election as he was already an MLC and had two-three years left to complete his term. He had also said that he would concentrate on electioneering for NDA to complete the development works undertaken in the state.

RJD today received a shot in the arm with state vice-president of the ruling JD-U Ram Bihari Singh joining it.

Prasad, while speaking on the occasion, alleged that the NDA government had "siphoned off" central funds meant for MNREGA and other centrally sponsored schemes and bureaucrats were ruling the roost in the state.

"I can say with authority that block development officers and district development commissioners have minted money in the present regime," Prasad said, adding even the CAG had made a negative remark against the NDA government.

The CAG report submitted to the Bihar Assembly had mentioned that fodder meant for distribution among the flood victims in 2008 were carried on scooters and motorcycles, he said.

"The Nitish Kumar regime has proved to be a bad omen for Bihar as it faced the worst ever floods and droughts during his tenure," Prasad said.

Charging Kumar with surrendering to the Maoists, the RJD chief said when he took over the reins of the state in 2005 only five districts were affected but now 32 of the 38 revenue districts were hit.

He blamed the government for sending an ill-equipped police team to take on the Maoists in Kajra hills in Lakhisarai district that led to the killing of seven policemen and abduction of four others, besides keeping the police force on tenterhooks for more than a week.

To woo upper caste voters, he promised 10 per cent quota for them if the RJD-LJP combine was voted to power.

PTI