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JD(U) questions Tejashwi silence on graft charges as Bihar crisis continues

Even as the Congress tries to play peacemaker in the feud between the RJD and the JD(U), Nitish Kumar’s party insists that his deputy Tejashwi Prasad must come clean on the graft charges.

india Updated: Jul 22, 2017 23:03 IST
Alok Mohit
Despite a much-publicised meeting between Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar and his  deputy Tejashwi Prasad Yadav, the JD(U) has once again asked Tejashwi to explain the source of his wealth.
Despite a much-publicised meeting between Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar and his deputy Tejashwi Prasad Yadav, the JD(U) has once again asked Tejashwi to explain the source of his wealth.(PTI)

Patna The feud in Bihar’s ruling Grand Alliance shows no sign of ending with the Janata Dal (United) questioning the silence of Rashtriya Janata Dal leader and deputy chief minister Tejashwi Prasad Yadav on the corruption charges he was facing.

“Silence is no solution,” JD(U) spokesperson Neeraj Kumar told a regional TV news channel on Saturday and asked Yadav - the younger son of RJD chief Lalu Prasad - to come clean on the corruption case filed by the CBI in the land-for-hotels case earlier this month.

“In fact, silence generally conveys two things. Either, one has accepted his guilt or has nothing to explain to the public on the charges levelled against him,” Kumar said in a clear indication that the party hasn’t budged from its original demand that Tejashwi must explain the source of his wealth.

The Grand Alliance had the people’s mandate on “zero-tolerance against corruption” and chief minister Nitish Kumar would never compromise on this, he said.

“We are running a coalition government, and if our partner RJD is not comfortable with JU(U) spokespersons raising the zero-tolerance against corruption issue time and again, it should suggest what action should be taken against them,” Kumar said.

The JD(U)’s persistence could mean that Nitish Kumar was apparently not satisfied with the explanations Tejashwi offered during their 40-minute closed-door meeting on Tuesday evening.

Earlier, on Friday, another JD(U) spokesperson, Ajay Alok had said Yadav should not to test its patience.

“After the recent raids, Tejashwi Yadav’s face and behaviour has changed. Our patience is being tested; those who have to answer are silent. I would like to ask - are you putting cotton in your ears? Those who need to answer the truth must come out and reply, rather than being quiet,” Alok told ANI.

Meanwhile, the Congress, which is the smallest partner in the Grand Alliance, asked the JD(U) to disclose the details of the meeting between Nitish Kumar and Tejashwi Prasad Yadav.

“Why are JD(U) spokespersons only asking Tejashwi to come out with an explanation on CBI’s charges? Why are they not disclosing what transpired between the chief minister and his deputy?” Congress leader Dilip Choudhary asked.

The Congress, which has been playing a peacemaker in the standoff between the JD(U) and the RJ(D), is seen tilting towards Lalu Prasad after Tejaswi’s meeting with the chief minister.

The CBI has registered a corruption case against Lalu Prasad, his wife Rabri Devi, son Tejashwi, former Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) managing director PK Goyal and wife of Lalu’s confidante Prem Chand Gupta, Sujata, on alleged irregularities in awarding tender for development, maintenance and operation of railway hotels in Ranchi and Puri in 2006.

(With agency inputs)

STRAP

MORE SALVOS Says silence generally conveys two things - either one has accepted his guilt or has nothing to explain to the public on the charges levelled against him

QUOTE

After recent raids, Tejashwi Yadav’s face and behaviour has changed. Our patience is being tested; those who have to answer are silent. I would like to ask - are you putting cotton in your ears?

Ajay Alok, JD(U) spokesperson