‘No sense’: Bihar CM Nitish Kumar on new Parliament building - Hindustan Times
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‘No sense’: Bihar CM Nitish Kumar on new Parliament building

May 27, 2023 05:46 PM IST

Nitish Kumar said the new Parliament building is an attempt to write a new history by those who had no contribution in the freedom struggle

Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar on Saturday questioned the need for a new Parliament building and alleged that those in power “will change the history of the country.” He also abstained Niti Aayog’s meeting held under Prime Minister Modi on Saturday.

Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar interacted with media persons after paying respects to Jawahar Lal Nehru on his death anniversary in Patna on Saturday. (ANI)
Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar interacted with media persons after paying respects to Jawahar Lal Nehru on his death anniversary in Patna on Saturday. (ANI)

“What was the need for a new Parliament? The earlier building was a historic one. I have repeatedly said that the people in power will change the history of this country. There was no sense to attend the NITI Aayog meeting today and also the inauguration of the new Parliament building tomorrow,” the Janata Dal-United (JD-U) leader told media persons after paying respects to India’s first prime minister Jawahar Lal Nehru on his death anniversary.

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“The present Parliament is part of India’s history… Why suddenly this government wanted to build a new Parliament? The new Parliament building is an attempt to write a new history by those who had no contribution in the freedom struggle. Had the same building been expanded, that would have been a different matter,” he added.

He also expressed his dismay over President Murmu and vice-president Jagdeep Dhankar, who is also the chairman of Rajya Sabha, not being invited to the function.

The JD-U has already announced its decision to abstain from the new Parliament House’s inauguration by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, demanding that it should be done by President Droupadi Murmu. The party has also announced that it will observe a day-long fast in Patna on the day to protest the inauguration of the new Parliament building by PM Modi.

Asked about the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)’s accusation that the state government had not invited the governor for the inauguration ceremony of the extended building of the Bihar Legislative Assembly, the CM said, “Those who are speaking today were with us when the extended building of the Legislative Assembly was built. The building had only been expanded. No new assembly building had been constructed in Bihar,” he said.

Niti Aayog meeting

On his decision not to attend the Niti Aayog meeting, Kumar said, “It was in the morning and I had other engagements in Patna during the day... Therefore, I could not go to Delhi. Had the meeting been held in the afternoon, I would have attended it. I sent a list of ministers and officials who could attend the meeting, but there was no response from the Centre. So, no representative from Bihar is attending today’s meeting”.

Kumar said had he attended the meeting; he would have raised several issues. “We would have raised the issue of special status once again. Why hasn’t the special status been given to Bihar yet? The caste-based census, which was conducted by the central government in 2011, should have been done by them this time, which did not happen.”

“For the development of the states, we are not getting as much help from the central government as they used to get. We are doing a lot of work in Bihar, but if it had got the status of a special state, Bihar would have progressed a lot. Bihar has not got the status of a special state, yet we are doing the work of development,” he said.

The BJP, meanwhile, slammed the chief ministers who did not attend the Niti Aayog meeting on Saturday. “On behalf of the Party, I would like to stress with all the emphasis at my command that this decision to boycott the (Niti Aayog) meeting by 8 CMs is totally irresponsible. It is also against the public interest,” senior party leader Ravi Shankar Prasad said.

“NITI Aayog is a significant platform to evolve a shared vision of national development priorities, sectors and strategies with the active involvement of States. It is an important body for determining the entire policy-framework and the road map for development of the entire country,” he added.

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  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR
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    Vijay is chief of bureau, Patna. He has spent 21 years in journalism and covers political beats and public affairs.

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