PATNA: Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar canceled today's public interface event and the subsequent press conference on health grounds, triggering speculation that he was avoiding the media in view of the recent CBI raids on the family of alliance partner Lalu Prasad.
Neither Kumar nor his party, the JD(U), has commented so far on Friday's CBI raids in four cities in connection with a corruption case, in which Lalu Prasad, his wife Rabri Devi and son Tejashwi are among the accused.
"The Lok Samvad program, which was scheduled for tomorrow, stands canceled due to an indisposition of Chief Minister Nitish Kumar," said an official release. It said the JD(U) chief was down with a fever.
Lok Samvad is a public interface program of Kumar held every Monday.
It is aimed at collecting the feedback of the people on the implementation of the development schemes and gather new ideas to strengthen 'sushasan' (good governance).
After the Lok Samvad program, the chief minister holds a press conference.
While Kumar has maintained a studied silence on the issue of raids on Lalu's family, another ally Congress has expressed solidarity with the RJD chief and accused the central BJP government of "misusing" the official machinery.