After row, Sushil Modi supports Nitish as ‘captain’ in Bihar polls
The NDA had won 39 out of 40 seats in the April-May Lok Sabha polls.Updated: Sep 12, 2019 04:31 IST
Senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader and Bihar deputy chief minister Sushil Kumar Modi on Wednesday dismissed former union minister Sanjay Paswan’s suggestion that chief minister Nitish Kumar should make way for a leader from the saffron party to lead the state government.
“@NitishKumar is the Captain of NDA in Bihar & will remain its Captain in next assembly elections in 2020 also. When Captain is hitting 4 & 6 & defeating rivals by inning where is the Q of any change,” Sushil Modi tweeted.
The NDA had won 39 out of 40 seats in the April-May Lok Sabha polls.
Paswan, currently a member of the Bihar legislative council, had on Monday ruffled the Janata Dal (United), the BJP’s coalition partner and ally with his suggestion that Kumar “should now focus on central politics as people support PM Narendra Modi’s decisions and vote for him and not for Nitish model”.
JD (U) national general secretary Shyam Rajak hit back, terming the BJP MLC’s statement as “faltu” [useless]. He said the PM Modi himself had spoken highly of Kumar’s social and developmental initiatives.
BJP spokesperson Nikhil Anand, said that the party has formed the government under Nitish Kumar’s leadership for the development of the state. “There is no question or dispute on the decision of the central leadership. Airing public opinion or personal views is entirely different from official stand of the party,” he said.
The JD (U)-BJP standoff, however, gave the opposition an opportunity to attack the ruling alliance. Rashtriya Janata Dal leader Tejashwi Yadav, in a tweet, said, “Is this not true that honourable Nitish Kumar got votes in the name of PM Modi without releasing his party’s manifesto and got 16 of his party leaders elected as MPs on BJP manifesto [in the 2019 LS polls]…Is it not true that he has been supporting the BJP on every Bill?..then how come he is different.”
The standoff between the two important NDA allies is not new and has been on the rise ever since JD (U) president and chief minister turned down “one seat offer” for joining the union ministry stating that he favoured proportionate representation and was not interested in having “symbolic presence”.
In July, the BJP had pulled up another party MLC, Sachidanad Rai, for his statements against Kumar and put him on a 10-day show-cause notice as to why disciplinary action should not be taken against him for undermining the sanctity of the NDA alliance.
Meanwhile, Union minister and Lok Janshakti Party (LJP) leader Ram Vilas Paswan on Wednesday said the NDA would win the assembly elections due next year.
He, however, refused to get drawn into the state leadership issue, saying he had come to Patna to highlight the Narendra Modi government’s achievements during the first 100 days .
“Even if I were to speak two sentences on it, you [journalists] will make it the headlines and ignore all that I have so far said [about the Central government’s achievements] with all my lung power,” the minister told reporters when asked to comment on the controversy sparked by Sanjay Paswan’s remark.