Union water resources minister Uma Bharti on Monday when questioned about the investigations into the recruitment scams by the STF, said that she stands by what she had said earlier: it is bigger than the fodder scam. However, she denied speaking on the issue any further.
On CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan being elevated to the BJP’s parliamentary board, Bharti said that he has handled more important responsibilities like being secretary of the parliamentary party earlier.
On the issue of 'love jihad', she said that it should be looked into as an issue. "Religious leaders of both communities should sit together and analyse the issue. I cannot comment on it officially but it is something that needs to be examined further," she said while addressing the media.
On another note, Bharti said she was in Bhopal to review irrigation schemes in Madhya Pradesh. She held a meeting with CM Chouhan and state water resources minister Jayant Malaiya and said that MP had done exemplary work in the sector, contributing to high agricultural growth in the state. The CM said that the irrigation potential in state had gone up from 7.5 lakh hectare to 27 hectare.
Speaking at the meeting, Malaiya said that in the future, Madhya Pradesh would have an irrigation potential of 1 crore hectare. During the next three to four years, the target is to increase irrigation potential to 40 lakh hectare. Arya said that the Narmada Valley Development Authority has developed an irrigation potential of 2.86 lakh hectares.
Bharti also appreciated the efforts of the state government for taking steps to clear the way for the Ken-Betwa link project. She said funds would not be impediment in any project.
She, however, deflected questions on her strained relations with the BJP state leadership by answering most such questions in a lighter vein. On being asked why she was not invited to inauguration programs hosted by the state government on Monday itself, Bharti said that she would go for the programs even without an invitation next time.
When asked if she was being forced to stay out of MP, Bharti said MP was her birth place and UP was her karmbhumi (work place), adding that there was no pressure on her.