Re-elect Modi to prevent infiltration: Shah in Bihar

17 Sep 2023

JHANJHARPUR : Union home minister Amit Shah on Saturday hit out at the alliance of “selfishness” ruling the state of Bihar; claimed that the Opposition bloc named its alliance INDIA because the UPA name was associated with scams; and predicted a massive victory for the BJP-led NDA in the 2024 Lok Sabha polls with Prime Minister Narendra Modi returning to his post for a third consecutive term.

The senior Bharatiya Janata Party leader made the remarks at a rally in Jhanjharpur parliamentary constituency, situated close to Nepal and Bangladesh, in Madhubani district of Bihar.

If the Lalu Prasad-Nitish Kumar alliance wins the assembly election again in Bihar, Shah said border areas will fall to infiltrators.

“If the Lalu-Nitish combine returns to power in Bihar and Narendra Modi does not come back as Prime Minister, the entire region will become infested with infiltrators,” said Shah. “In such a situation, many types of issues will arise in Bihar. Do you want the area to be teeming with infiltrators?”

He exuded confidence that the BJP-led NDA will win “all 40 seats” in the state in 2024.

“I want to thank the people of Bihar because in 2014, with 40 percent votes and 31 seats, you made Narendra Modi the Prime Minister. In 2019, you made him the Prime Minister for second time by giving 53 percent votes and 39 seats. As of now, I am confident that NDA and BJP will win 40 out of 40 seats by breaking the record of 39,” Shah said.

Attacking the ruling alliance for appeasement politics, the home minister also targeted the Congress, a partner in the state’s ruling alliance, for dragging its feet on Ram temple at Ayodhya and Article 370 that gave special status to Jammu and Kashmir.

Shah also credited PM Modi for the abrogation of Article 370 and the construction of the temple which is set for inauguration “by January next year”.

Comparing the ruling Janata Dal (United) and Rashtriya Janata Dal alliance in the state with oil and water, Shah said, “The alliance of JDU and RJD is like oil and water, they can never unite. Nitish Babu, no matter how high the selfishness is, oil and water cannot be one. The oil has nothing to do with it, but the oil makes the water dirty. The alliance made to become the Prime Minister is going to sink you.”

The JD(U)-RJD alliance is taking the state back on the path of “Jungle Raj”, Shah said.

“There is a Lalu [Prasad]-Nitish [Kumar] government in Bihar. The incidents of kidnapping, firing, looting, and murder of journalists and Dalits are increasing every day. Lalu ji has become active once again, and Nitish ji has become inactive. From this, you can understand what is going to happen in Bihar. This selfish alliance is taking Bihar towards Jungle Raj,” he said.

In his nearly 30-minutes-long speech, Shah also accused chief minister Nitish Kumar and RJD supremo Lalu Prasad of indulging in “appeasement politics” with measures like cuts in school holidays.

“The people of this alliance disrespect Ramcharitmanas. They cancel holidays on Rakshandhan and Janmashtami. They link Sanatana Dharma to a number of diseases. All they can do is appeasement,” he said, in a reference to remarks by DMK minister Udhayanidhi Stalin where he compared Sanatana to diseases like dengue and malaria which need to be eradicated.

Shah went on to thank the people of the state for standing up against the new school calendar which the education department said was brought in to ensure classes are held for a requisite number of days in a year.

“I would like to congratulate the people of Bihar for putting up a resistance that forced the state government to withdraw its order whereby holidays on Rakshabandhan, the festival of brothers and sisters, and Janmashtami, devoted to Lord Krishna, were done away with,” said Shah.

Coming down heavily on the INDIA bloc, he said that the opposition parties were aware that they could not dislodge the BJP with the UPA name.

“They have made a new alliance with a new name. They worked with the name of UPA and did corruption worth Rs 12 lakh crore. They changed their name because they could not come back with the name UPA, hence they had to come up with INDI Alliance,” he said.

The home minister, like PM Modi at a rally in Madhya Pradesh on Thursday, refused to refer to the 28-party opposition grouping that has come together to fight the BJP in the 2024 polls as INDIA, referring to it as the INDI alliance.

“Some of the (UPA) scams involved Lalu Prasad, who was then the railway minister, to which Nitish Kumar is now turning a blind eye for the sake of his Prime Ministerial ambitions,” alleged Shah.

He, however, insisted that PM Modi will win a record third term.

“Lalu Yadav wants to make his son the Chief Minister. Nitish Kumar wants to be the Prime Minister. But it is not possible because the position of the Prime Minister is not vacant. Narendra Modi is going to take that position again,” he said.

He also said that the showcasing of Nalanda and Madhubani paintings during the G20 Summit last week were proof of the high esteem in which PM Modi held Bihar’s heritage.

“It was at the instance of PM Modi that African Union was included in the G20. I have been travelling across the country since then. Young people feel proud of India’s growing influence,” he said.

The BJP leader’s comment invoked a sharp reaction from the CM, who said that he does not take notice of people “who are rattled by my efforts to bring together the opposition”.

“I take no notice of these people who are rattled by my efforts to bring together the opposition and, therefore, keep talking rubbish,” Kumar told reporters in Bakhtiyarpur town, on the outskirts of the state capital.

Rebutting Shah’s charge of misgovernance in the state, Kumar said, “He knows nothing about Bihar and the work we have been doing here. He does not know anything about the country either.”

In a similar vein, former chief minister Rabri Devi said that that the people of Bihar will give the BJP a befitting reply.

“They (BJP govt) won’t stop inflation, prices of everything will be hiked. People will be giving befitting replies to them. They are doing injustice to the poor,” Rabri Devi said.