Special Status Demand Echoes in Bihar as RJD Says Nitish Kumar Has Forgotten Issue

Numerically, these bypolls might not be important. However, this is being termed as a litmus test for Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar as this is the first public test since he pulled out of RJD-Congress alliance allied with the BJP-led NDA.

Patna: The Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) on Thursday asked Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar to learn from Chandrababu Naidu and accused him of forgetting the demand of Special Category State to Bihar even as Nitish's colleague Pavan Verma raised the issue saying the state was getting a raw deal from the Centre.

RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav referred allotment of a bungalow and Z Plus security cover to sharpen his attack saying Nitish has forgotten the long due demand for his personal gains. He challenged the CM to hear the voice of ‘Antaratma’ and take a decision like Chandrababu did by pulling out from the union cabinet.

“I had written a letter to Nitish ji on Feb 5 to raise the demand of special category status with Prime Minister Narendra Modi. But he did not even reply to my letter. If Bihar’s demand is not met, he should resign and pull out from NDA”, he said.

The RJD found support from an unexpected quarter as JD(U) general secretary Pavan Kumar Verma also raised the issue saying it was an old demand from the state. However, JD(U) quickly distanced itself from his remark and termed it as his personal thought.

JD(U) general secretary KC Tyagi said, “We agree with a part of what Mr Pavan Verma has tweeted out. SCS is essential for the development of Bihar. However, JDU is not dissatisfied or angry when it comes to NDA . It was his personal view.”

On the stand of Telugu Desam Party (TDP), he said the JD(U)-led state government was getting all assistance from the Centre and Chandrababu Naidu was not the leader of his party.