In what appears as yet another difference of opinion among Bihar NDA allies regarding distribution of tickets, the state’s Chief Minister Nitish Kumar has called one of BJP spokesperson Shahnawaz Hussain’s comment ‘highly irresponsible’.
Kumar, who is also the party chief of JD(U), BJP’s main ally in Bihar, was responding to a question in an interview on Monday, 1 April.
Hussain, a former cabinet minister had, on 23 March, said in a tweet, that he will not be contesting from the Bhagalpur seat in Bihar, adding that ‘Nitish Kumar’s JD(U) had taken’ his seat along with those of six sitting BJP MPs.
In an interview to CNN-News18, Kumar said that Hussain should retract his highly irresponsible statement and that the BJP should also clarify its stand.
“I got him the seat from Bhagalpur and he won with JD(U) support the first time. His statement is highly irresponsible. Not only should he retract it, I strongly urge the BJP to issue a clarification,” Kumar said.
Hussain had first become the MP from Bhagalpur in 2006, after winning a by-election. He got elected again in 2009, but lost the seat to RJD’s Shailesh Kumar in 2014.
Earlier, BJP’s MP from Nawada in Bihar, Giriraj Singh had also expressed his displeasure at being nominated from Begusarai.
“My self-respect is hurt that no other MP’s seat was changed in Bihar. It was decided without talking to me. State BJP leadership should tell me why it was done. I’ve nothing against Begusarai but I can’t compromise with my self-respect,” Singh told news agency ANI.
The BJP and JD(U) are fighting on 17 seats each in Bihar in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections, while Ram Vilas Paswan’s Lok Janshakti Party (LJP) is fighting on six seats.
(With inputs from CNN-News18 and ANI)