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Nitish will be CM candidate of 'grand alliance' even if RJD gets more seats: Lalu Prasad tells India TV

Patna: Rashtriya Janata Dal(RJD) supremo Lalu Prasad today made it clear that Nitish Kumar will become Bihar CM  even if RJD gets more seats than JD(U) in upcoming Assembly elections.Appearing in India TV's election special
India TV News Desk September 23, 2015 10:46 IST
India TV News Desk

Patna: Rashtriya Janata Dal(RJD) supremo Lalu Prasad today made it clear that Nitish Kumar will become Bihar CM  even if RJD gets more seats than JD(U) in upcoming Assembly elections.

Appearing in India TV's election special programme ‘Chunav Manch' in Patna, Lalu Prasad said, “Irrespective of who wins largest number of seats, Nitish Kumar will be CM candidate of grand-alliance. Our priority is to ensure that BJP goes back empty-handed from Bihar.”

In his inimitable style, former Bihar Chief Minister said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi is junior to him both in terms of age and political experience.  

“PM Modi is just 65 years old. I'm around 70 years old and am elder to him. Even in politics, I became CM way back in 1990. He must have joined politics much later,” Lalu Prasad pointed out.

Lalu Prasad accused BJP of trying to appease upper castes of Bihar before Assembly elections and said that they are not able to digest coming together of two backwards like Lalu and Nitish.

Read Also: Bihar polls overview: Can Narendra Modi pull it off against ‘grand alliance' of Lalu-Nitish?

“Everybody knows the status of backwards and scheduled caste in Bihar before 1990. They had to face insult quite often. Things changed after I became the CM in 1990. I have empowered that section and now they are getting the respect,” Lalu said.

Lalu Prasad also accused PM Modi of playing caste card by trying to divide Yadav voters in Bihar elections.

“PM Modi wants to divide Yadav votes but he will not succeed as the entire Yaduvanshi community (Army of Yadavas) of Bihar is going to vote unanimously in favor of our alliance,” Lalu added.

Lalu Prasad launched a scathing attack on RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat for suggesting that there was an urgent need to review the reservation policy in the country.

“We all know  BJP is a mask of RSS. And Mohan Bhagwat's statement makes it clear that they want to abolish reservation for backwards, SCs and STs. But we will not allow that, come what may.

Throwing an open challenge to RSS and BJP, Lalu Prasad said, “If you have guts, try and abolish reservations and be ready to face the music.”

Sushil Modi cancelled 2010 dinner, I am worried for his political future: Bihar CM Nitish Kumar

Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar also participated in India TV's election special programme and came down heavily on  BJP and former Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Kumar Modi.

To dispel the notion that he cancelled the dinner for BJP National Executive Members including the then Gujarat CM Narendra Modi  in 2010, Nitish Kumar clarified that it was  Sushil Kumar Modi who first persuaded him to host the dinner and later canceled it in his name.

“I want to put it on record that I was not responsible for cancelling that dinner. In fact, I was implicated in this controversy by none other than Sushil Kumar Modi. It was he who announced that the dinner has been cancelled. In fact, JD(U) had spent large amount of money for hosting that dinner,” Nitish said.

“It's not that Narendra Modi is not aware of this. He knows everything and I am told that he does not forget anything and that's why I worry for the political future of Sushil Kumar Modi,” Nitish Kumar added.

Nitish Kumar asked Sushil Modi to explain why BJP decided to contest elections in alliance with JD(U) if they were so hurt by the cancellation of the dinner.

Bihar Chief Minister conceded that he was personally hurt by Prime Minister's DNA comment against him.

“I am not angry but yes, I am deeply hurt. It was the pride of Bihar that was hurt by his DNA comments. My father was a freedom fighter. My ancestors fought against the British. How can he raise questions over my DNA?” said a visibly hurt Nitish.

Nitish, however, looked uncomfortable when he was asked to clarify the meaning of his statement that what happened in the past won't be repeated as it clearly indicated that the allegations of misrule against RJD regime were true.

“Are there no contradictions in NDA? Don't you know Paswan claimed that he resigned from Vajpayee cabinet because of Gujarat riots under Modi. Today he is a minister in a govt headed by the same Modi,” Nitish argued.

“ We are not beyond contradictions. And it is truer in this era of coalition politics. But Bihar has changed and what happened in past (RJD rule) won't be repeated again,” Nitish added.

When reminded that  Mulayam Singh questioned his commitment to secularism as he enjoyed  power with BJP, a visibly agitated Nitish Kumar asked,” Is Mulayam  Singh Vice-chancellor of University of secularism? Do I need any certificate of secularism from him?”