RJD puts up posters, asks Nitish Kumar why are migrants in Bihar being insulted
The migrants have been coming back to Bihar over the past month amid the easing of nationwide lockdown restrictions that were imposed on March 25 to contain the spread of the raging coronavirus disease (Covid-19) outbreak.Updated: Jun 06, 2020 22:43 IST
The opposition Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) on Saturday upped its ante against the Nitish Kumar-led Bihar government over a controversial letter, which has since been withdrawn, by the state police administration that had raised apprehensions about a spike in criminal activities because of the influx of migrant workers to their home state.
The migrants have been coming back to Bihar over the past month amid the easing of nationwide lockdown restrictions that were imposed on March 25 to contain the spread of the raging coronavirus disease (Covid-19) outbreak.
The RJD wanted to make political capital out of the controversial letter by converting it into giant posters and plastering them outside its state party office in Patna, as the party wants to tap the migrant vote bank ahead of the assembly polls slated to be held in October-November.
The state police brass withdrew the letter on Friday while conceding it was a mistake.
But, RJD’s Tejashwi Prasad Yadav, who is also the leader of the opposition in the Bihar, made a spectacle on Saturday by climbing on a ladder and plastering the posters outside the state party office on Beer Chand Patel Marg to take the fight to CM Kumar’s camp.
The posters asked tough questions for the state government and blamed it for humiliating migrant labourers when it is incapable of generating jobs for them in Bihar.
“Nitish Kumar sharam karo. Shramiko ko samman nahin de sakhtey, toh apmaan kyon (Have shame Nitish Kumar. If you can’t give dignity to labourers, why are insulting them?),” read the posters while taking a dig at the state machinery for dubbing the migrants as criminals.
Later, Yadav issued a statement and appealed to all RJD workers to publicise the contents of the letter in a bid to expose the anti-migrant attitude of the state government.
“All the workers should put up posters of this letter in their neighbourhoods, panchayats, at block and district level to expose the state government’s anti-migrant streak,” he said.
On Friday, Yadav had slammed the state government for issuing such a letter. He had alleged that it was an insult to lakhs of migrants who have returned to their native state and are facing an acute financial crisis because of the Covid-19-induced job losses.
The RJD has been hitting out at the state government over the return of lakhs of migrants from various states in the past month, claiming it reflected how the 15-year tenure of CM Kumar had failed in generating jobs for Bihar’s working-class population.
The party also blamed the government for its failure to organise an adequate number of trains to bring back stranded migrants from Bihar on time.
Political experts are of the opinion that the RJD’s aggressive stand on job creation for migrant workers and their socio-economic rehabilitation is a calibrated strategy to tap the vote bank among the returnees in the run-up to the assembly polls slated to be held in October-November.