Katju targets Nitish, says CM has lost goodwill of people
Patna: Attacking Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, Press Council of India Chairman Markandey Katju on Friday claimed that he had lost the goodwill of people as indicated by public protests against him during his recent 'Adhikar yatra' and was "scared" of facing the people.
"The chief minister was shown black flags by the people and massive public protests took place during his 'Adhikar yatra' which proves that he has failed to fulfil promises of development, employment and electricity even seven years after assuming power," Katju told a function here.
He claimed that the public protests were so strong that Kumar had to abandon his yatra midway and at places where he addressed public meetings there were more policemen than the people, which he said proved that the chief minister was "scared" of those who had given him mandate for successive terms.
He asked the chief minister to introspect about the actual cause of protests against him and admit that there was a genuine reason for anger against him and his government.
Kumar should also analyse whether the standard of living of the people of Bihar had improved during his rule.
He also slammed Kumar for carrying out a 'Bihar shining' campaign in the media and said that the facts like poverty, backwardness, lack of industrialization and unemployment and migration could not be ignored.
"Bihar will not shine by itself if you just make a lot of noise about it," he said.
He said that Kumar had brought crime under control during his first term, but the growing crime figure in recent times reflected poorly on him and his government.
He also expressed concern at the prevailing casteism in the socio-political system of Bihar and said that the divisive politics based on caste had reached the nadir.
"Has Jai Prakash Narayan's pupil fulfilled the dream of his idol about establishment of a casteless society after learning the basics of polity from him?" Katju asked.
Stating that Bihar was a world leader in religion, culture and even development at one time, he asked the chief minister to introspect and state whether Bihar had moved forward or gone backward over the years.
Katju also questioned the development model of Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi sayign Gujarat had a higher rate of malnutrition among children than the national average and
"Gujarat has a higher malnutrition rate at 47 per cent against the national average at 46," he said.
Katju also said that the health of children in India was worse than sub-Sahara countries in Africa.
He slammed the Shiv Sena and Maharashtra Navnirman Sena leaders for their hate campaign against migrants in Mumbai and Maharashtra.
"The fundamental right under Article 19(1)(E) of the Constitution entitles an Indian citizen to settle in any part of the country," he said.
Those people who questioned the right of fellow countrymen to live and work in Mumbai and Maharashtra were 'traitors' and should be punished severely, he said.
"These traitors should be punished severely," Katju said.
Not all Maharashtrians or Mumbaikars, however, shared the 'son-of-the-soil' theory of these leaders, he said, appealing to the people of Bihar not to retaliate against Maharashtrian people settled in the state.