Upendra Kushwaha gets invite to NDA meet, denies plan to meet Rahul Gandhi
The invite came on Saturday when Upendra Kushwaha began his two-day fast to protest education policy of Nitish govt and its failure to transfer land for proposed KVs at Aurangabad and Nawada.Updated: Dec 09, 2018 08:27 IST
A disgruntled Upendra Kushwaha, Union minister of state for human resource development and Rashtriya Lok Samata Party chief, will attend the National Democratic Alliance meeting on Monday, an RLSP leader said.
Kushwaha has been extended an invite by Union parliamentary affairs minister Narendra Singh Tomar. The NDA meeting, to be chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the Parliament annexe building, will be held a day before the start of the winter session of Parliament, said RLSP leader Rajesh Yadav.
The invite came on Saturday when Kushwaha began his two-day fast to protest against the education policy of Nitish Kumar-led NDA government in Bihar and its failure to transfer land for proposed Kendriya Vidayalay at Aurangabad and Nawada. His dharna did not go down well with the BJP, which advised him to show ‘decency’ as he was also a part of the NDA.
Kushwaha, who had failed to get an appointment with PM Modi to sort out developments in the NDA, has been attacking the state government and placed a 25-point ‘charter of demands’ before it, which, he said, would pave the way for a reconciliation with the chief minister. The demands include appointment of school teachers, exempting teachers from non-teaching work and timely holding of the student union elections.
The JD(U) ridiculed Kushwaha’s demand and wondered what the Union minister had been doing during all these years.
“After all, education is in the concurrent list. He cannot evade responsibility by pretending that it is exclusively a state matter,” said JD(U) spokesperson Neeraj Kumar.
NDA’s other alliance partner, Lok Janshakti Party (LJP) had also advised Kushwaha to exercise restraint in his criticism of Bihar chief minister.
Kushwaha was apparently peeved over the chief minister’s remark at a function organised by a media house in the state capital on November 3, where he had parried a question on the Union minister’s recent claim about his unwillingness to continue as CM after 2020. “Batcheet ka star itna ‘neeche’ mat giraeeye (don’t allow the level of debate to dip so low), the chief minister had said.
The RLSP chief had raked up the issue and demanded an apology from Kumar for his comments as he claimed that the statement was targeted against him.
The RLSP leader had sought appointment with BJP president Shah to resolve seat sharing and Kumar’s statement issues. Denied a meeting, he served an ultimatum to the BJP to resolve the issue of seat sharing by November 30, following which his party would take a call on its future course of action. He had also sought an appointment with the PM to present his point.
No Meeting With Rahul
Kushwaha, meanwhile, denied that he had any plans to meet Congress president Rahul Gandhi on December 10. Addressing a gathering of his party leaders and workers at Hajipur, Kushwaha categorically said he would not quit the NDA but continue putting his demand for “acceptable seats participation” in alliance for the forthcoming parliamentary elections in 2019.
“Why should I meet him when I am not going to distance myself from the NDA?” he said.
Kushwaha is upset over the seat arrangement formula for 2019 Lok Sabha polls. BJP national president Amit Shah had announced that the JD(U) and BJP would contest on equal number of seats, sparking a speculation that two parties will contest on 17 seats each leaving four for the LJP and two for the RLSP.
First Published: Dec 08, 2018 23:38 IST