BEGUSARAI: BJP president Amit Shah today attacked Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, accusing him of backstabbing the NDA by snapping ties and said it was in line with his habit of "deceit" to grab power.
"Nitish Kumar betrayed George Fernandes, who gave him (Kumar) a national identity, and more recently, Jitan Ram Manjhi. Where is George Fernandes today? He has been forced to spend 'gumnaami ki zindagi' (a life of obscurity)?" he said. Shah said the saffron party had given a leadership role to Kumar in the NDA and assisted him throughout "even at the cost of insult to BJP workers" to prevent return of 'jungle raj' in Bihar.
"But, in tune with his behaviour he stabbed BJP in the back and joined hands with Lalu Prasad for the sake of power," he said, and asked BJP workers to spread the truth among voters. Shah also targeted RJD supremo Lalu Prasad for trying to create a controversy over reservations for backward castes and dalits and asserted BJP was not against quotas for them. "Lalu Prasad is nowadays talking about reservation for backwards and dalits and accusing the BJP of intending to end reservation which is not true. BJP has been in favour of reservation for backwards and dalits since the promulgation of Constitution and is not in favour of any review," he said.
The BJP chief accused Prasad of harping on the issue to "divert the attention of voters from the issue of jungle raj." Addressing a BJP workers' conference at Begusarai, about 100 km from the state capital, the BJP chief said the Modi government attached great importance to national security, which will never be compromised.
"Rahul Baba - no now dares to slaughter our soldiers. If anybody engages in a misadventure, we enter Burma's borders and our forces take them out, that's what Narendra Modi's government is all about. "You wouldn't know understand this because you have got your perspective from your mother's side of the family," he said, apparently referring to the army's counteroffensive against insurgents along the Myanmar border in June following the killing of 18 soldiers in an ambush in Manipur.
The BJP president mocked Prasad's claims of being a Socialist, saying the RJD leader's entire politics nowadays was focused on promoting the interest of his family. "While Prime Minister Narendra Modi will start his campaign for Bihar election from Banka on October 2, Prasad started his campaign from Raghopur (last Sunday) from where his son (Tejaswi Yadav) is contesting and which will see voting in the third phase," Shah pointed out.
He also criticised Prasad's comment on cross-border firing by Pakistan. "It is true that Pakistan is still indulging in firing at borders. But, today Pakistan starts the firing but our soldiers end it by giving it 'eent ka jawab pathar se' (tit for tat)," Shah said. Defending Prime Minister Narendra Modi's foreign trips, which has been criticised by the opposition, the BJP chief
said, "Earlier nobody took notice of visit of 'Mauni Baba' (Manmohan Singh) to foreign land, but today people in large numbers welcome Narendra Modi."
Shah said development topped BJP's poll agenda in Bihar and lauded the progress made by BJP-ruled Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat and Chhattisgarh. Shah promised if the NDA was voted to power in the state, its government would ensure 24-hour electricity and huge investment in Bihar so youth do not have to go to other in search of livelihood.
BJP workers from 11 districts participated in the conference which was also attended by Union Minister Ananth Kumar, who is also in-charge of party's Bihar affairs.