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Thursday, Nov 14, 2019

JD (U) targets Giriraj Singh for his jibe at Nitish Kumar over Patna floods

Union Minister Giriraj Singh’s criticism of the Bihar government drew a stinging backlash from the Janata Dal (U).

india Updated: Oct 06, 2019 12:35 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
With the Ganga’s water level falling, the administration engaged heavy-duty pumps to flush out water from Patna’s worst-affected localities such as Rajendra Nagar, Kankar Bagh and Pataliputra Colony.
With the Ganga’s water level falling, the administration engaged heavy-duty pumps to flush out water from Patna’s worst-affected localities such as Rajendra Nagar, Kankar Bagh and Pataliputra Colony.(ANI)
         

Union minister and BJP leader Giriraj Singh came under fire from the Janata Dal (U), the saffron party’s coalition partner in Bihar on Saturday, a day after he criticized chief minister Nitish Kumar for his “inept” handling of the floods in Patna.

The JD (U) dismissed Singh’s comments in Darbhangha on Friday.

“He (Giriraj Singh) is not even comparable to a speck of dust on Nitish Kumar’s feet. One does not become a leader just by chanting the name of Mahadev (Lord Shiva) every now and then,” PTI quoted JD (U) spokesman Sanjay Singh as saying.

The Union Minister often refers to Lord Shiva in his speeches.

What got the JD (U)’s goat was Giriraj Singh’s latest comment that “a leader should accept praise as well as blame” as he held Nitish Kumar and deputy chief minister Sushil Modi responsible for the aftermath of the Patna floods that left parts of the state capital inundated.

Earlier in the week, Giriraj Singh, who has often baited Kumar had said in his Lok Sabha seat of Begusarai that the NDA “owed an apology to the people of Patna”.

JD (U) spokesman Rajiv Ranjan Prasad countered the Union minister with facts to point out that it was largely the BJP which was responsible for the crisis in Patna.

“Ever since the JD (U)-BJP combine has been ruling the state, the urban development portfolio has been with our alliance partner. The Mayor of Patna belongs to the BJP and so do the MPs representing the two Lok Sabha constituencies that cover the district. All the assembly segments in the city have been BJP strongholds since the 19990s,” Prasad said according to PTI.

JD (U) national general secretary and chief spokesman K C Tyagi also put the Union minister in his line of fire and accused him of undermining the coalition government in Bihar.

“Giriraj Singh has become a habitual offender. He is causing more damage to our alliance than Tejashwi Yadav (leader of the opposition in state assembly) could be capable of.”

Tejashwi Yadav’s Rashtirya Janata Dal (RJD) which has been licking its wounds since a hammering in the Lok Sabha elections tried to capitalize on the differences between Giriraj Singh and Nitish Kumar and backed the former.

“It is one of the rare occasions when we have found ourselves on the same page as a polarising BJP leader like Giriraj Singh. He is perfectly right in blaming the NDA government in Bihar for the Patna disaster,” RJD national spokesman and Rajya Sabha MP Manoj Jha said.

Meanwhile, with the Ganga’s water level falling, the administration engaged heavy-duty pumps to flush out water from Patna’s worst-affected localities such as Rajendra Nagar, Kankar Bagh and Pataliputra Colony.