RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav, who on Friday took over as Leader of Opposition in the Bihar Assembly, accused Chief Minister Nitish Kumar of using him as a pawn to go over to the BJP.
“You (Nitish Kumar) used me as a pawn to go over to the BJP. You have gone from saying ‘He Ram’ (in consternation) when you saw the BJP, to saying ‘Jai Shri Ram’,” Tejashwi Yadav, who was the state’s Deputy Chief Minister till Wednesday evening, said in his over 40-minute speech in the Assembly.
Tejashwi Yadav also accused the Janata Dal-United President of “insulting” the mandate of the people time and again. “In 2013, he dumped the BJP (Bharatiya Janata Party) and expelled the BJP ministers from his cabinet, and now again he has repeated it. The JD-U and BJP-led NDA joining hands to form the government is an insult to democracy,” he said.
He said the Grand Alliance of JD-U, Rashtriya Janata Dal and and Congress was given the mandate of five years by the people in the 2015 Assembly elections, and it was against the BJP.
Tejashwi Yadav said it was Nitish Kumar who had called for making a “sangh mukt” (RSS free) India but had himself bowed down before the RSS. “Nitish Kumar was with the BJP earlier too, but this time he has proved he is anti-Backward Classes and anti-Dalit by rejoining them.”
He reminded Nitish Kumar that in the 2014 Lok Sabha polls, the JD-U had managed to win only two seats thanks to the RJD, and the RJD won four seats despite the BJP wave.
Tejashwi Yadav said Nitish Kumar had never discussed his resignation with him over corruption charges. “If he had, I would have thought about it. I was taking legal opinion and I told him so. Nitish Kumar is still my uncle, but he betrayed me. If Nitish had asked me to resign, I would have thought about it,” he said.
He charged that BJP leader Sushil Modi is also facing cases. “So why did he take oath (as Deputy Chief Minister). Why was the timing of the oath-taking ceremony changed? How did PM Narendra Modi tweet so quickly on Nitish Kumar’s resignation?,” he asked. The RJD has alleged that Nitish Kumar’s quitting the Grand Alliance to join the BJP soon after was all “pre-planned”.
Tejashwi Yadav also questioned how and why Prime Minister Modi welcomed Nitish Kumar’s decision to resign on Wednesday night and later also congratulated the latter on joining the battle against corruption.
He denied his father and RJD chief Lalu Prasad was favouring him in any way, “or else I would have been the Chief Minister”.
“My father was not in Putra moh, he was in Bhai moh (favouring a brother) that’s why he (Nitish Kumar) was elected as the Chief Minister,” Tejashwi Yadav said.
“Everything from the resignation of Nitish Kumar and BJP’s support to him was planned. The way in which he (Nitish Kumar) gave his resignation was saddening,” Tejashwi Yadav said.
Attacking the Bihar Chief Minister further, Tejashwi Yadav said, “Why was he silent during the CBI raids?”
“When the raids were carried out at our premises he fell ill and when (opposition Presidential candidate) Meira Kumarji came to Patna, he went to Rajgir,” he remarked.
Nitish Kumar on Wednesday resigned as the Grand Alliance Chief Minister and again took oath on Thursday with the support of BJP.