KHAGARIA: Seizing on a stinging attack by Bihar BJP MP R K Singh on party ticket distribution in the poll -bound state, Chief Minister Nitish Kumar today said BJP's "true colours" have been exposed even as the former bureaucrat steadfastly stood by his remark.
>> Also Read: BJP to Abolish Quota Policy, If It Wins in Bihar: Nitish
In potentially damaging remarks for BJP ahead of the high-stakes polls, its MP and former Union Home Secretary R K Singh yesterday alleged that party tickets were sold to criminals, a charge dismissed as "baseless" by the party but termed "exceptionally grave" by rivals.
Kumar touched upon the allegation while addressing a series of election rallies in the state.
"On one side there is unity, and on the other side(NDA) there are differences, fights and troubles. Now an MP of the BJP, has openly accused the party on how tickets are being distributed in Bihar by BJP. The sort of "Charitrawaan" (principled) people are being given tickets, We are not saying this, it is people from BJP who are saying this. The true colours of the BJP have been exposed," the senior JD(U) leader said while addressing a series of election rallies.
Claiming that BJP leaders in Bihar are "upset" over ticket distribution, Singh today said he was just putting forth the stance of the party workers.
"I've received over 1,000 calls since yesterday just to tell me that I said the right thing, and this has boosted the morale of the party workers. "This is not about my unhappiness, I'm not upset. I'm just putting forth the stance of the party workers, somebody has to do that. "Anybody in Bihar will only be satisfied when parties stop giving tickets to people who are chargesheeted for serious crimes," he added.
Singh, a first-time Lok Sabha MP from Ara in Bihar, yesterday left BJP acutely embarrassed when he said criminals were rewarded with tickets at the cost of genuine party workers which, he contended, obliterated the distinction between his own party and RJD chief Lalu Prasad, who was being targeted for having established a 'jungle raj' when RJD ruled the state.
"Criminals have been given tickets even before they joined the party. This is injustice to the people of Bihar. Some people have sold tickets. What is this? How will we get clean administration?
"You have given tickets to criminals. How will you give a clean administration in Bihar. No reasons have been given why criminals were allotted tickets. It is not that only criminals can win elections. We as residents of Bihar are concerned. What is the difference between you and Lalu Prasad," Singh said in Patna yesterday.
On other issues, Kumar also claimed that the BJP-led coalition at the Centre will abolish reservation for OBCs, SC and STs if it wins state assembly elections after RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat called for a review of the quota system. "The RSS chief has publicly called for review of the reservation policy which the BJP-led coalition at the centre may scrap if NDA gets power in Bihar," Kumar alleged at another rally. The victory of the BJP-led alliance will embolden NDA to toe the RSS line and scrap the existing reservation policy, he alleged. Kumar promised 35 per cent reservation to women in government jobs if his alliance (JDU-RJD-Cong) comes back to power at the hustings.