Signs of unease within the ruling Grand Alliance are visible once again with one of the top leaders of senior ally RJD, Raghuvansh Prasad Singh, coming down heavily on the state government for the question paper leak of a competitive examination to recruit clerks and its subsequent cancellation.
The exam was conducted by the Bihar State Staff Selection Commission (BSSC).
Singh blamed the state government for the paper leak and said it reflected how there was an absence of monitoring and vigilance in key wings of the government.
“After the toppers’ scam, it is the second instance when the state has got a bad name. There should be more focus on education related matters,” he said.
Singh’s remarks drew sharp reactions from JD(U) spokesperson Sanjay Singh, who said the senior RJD leader was only humiliating GA leaders by making such “baseless observations”.
“Once the paper leak matter came to light, the government set up an SIT and arrested bigwigs in BSSC. The inquiry is still going. So, where is the question of any negligence?” he said, adding that the RJD leader should know his party is also a part of the ruling GA government.
Incidentally, this is not the first time Singh has taken potshots at the GA government’s performance and chief minister Nitish Kumar, leaving the JD(U) red faced. It has also set off speculations of how Singh’s strong utterances against the government could be scripted at the behest of the RJD brass, including party chief Lalu Prasad, to needle the JD(U) strongman to maintain the balance of power in the coalition.
“Singh is a strong voice in the RJD, who cannot be taken lightly. His statements on governance issues have political connotations and reflect how the allies in the Grand Alliance have a fragile relationship,” said a senior GA leader, wishing not to be quoted.
The perception is not far fetched as Singh criticised the government for undermining RJD chief Lalu Prasad’s seniority as a leader by making him seat on the ground in the VIP gallery during the PM’s visit to the Prakash Utsav’s concluding event, kicking off a war of words between RJD and JD(U).
Singh had also berated the government’s law to implement prohibition calling its provisions ‘draconian’. He even defended Md Shahabuddin’s remarks against the CM in which the Siwan strongman had described Nitish as “a CM of circumstances”.
However , the RJD chief has always brushed aside the speculations of giving tacit support to Singh and scripting his utterances against the CM, saying the former Union minister has a habit of speaking his own mind and his statements do not have the endorsement of the party. Whatever might be the case, the former Vaishali MP continues to hog limelight for his ‘plainspeak’ and showing the red card to the government on any slipup.