‘Migration Mustn’t be Seen as a Problem’: Nitish Kumar on Jobs

Kumar challenged his opponents to have a look at the various measures taken by his government for creation of jobs.

Published01 Mar 2020, 07:13 PM IST
3 min read

Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Sunday, 1 March said migration of people from one state to another should not be seen as a problem as he asserted that the “nation is one” and people are free to move from one place to another.

The Janata Dal (United) chief's reaction came after election strategist and former party national vice-president Prashant Kishor and CPI's Kanhaiya Kumar flagged the issue of migration of youths from Bihar to other states and unemployment recently.

Addressing a JD(U) 'karyakarta sammelan' in Patna, Kumar challenged his political opponents to have a look at the various measures taken by his government which have resulted in creation of jobs.

Recounting a conversation that he had with Raghunandan Lal Bhatia, who served as the governor of Bihar in 2008-09, Kumar said, “He asked me why was it that Punjab had started getting so fewer migrant workers from Bihar. Similar was the observation of the then Punjab deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal.”

He said, a fall in the number of migrant workers from Bihar was also the common refrain in Bhutan when he visited the Himalayan kingdom.

“Those who are interested in knowing the facts can come to us. We will provide them with exact figures of the number of vacancies filled by the state public service commission and other bodies entrusted with recruitment of manpower. They will be also given an exact idea of how much things have changed since the preceding regimes,” Kumar said.

He, however, also said “ek gandi cheez shuru ho gayi hai migration ke naam se (a bad thing has started by way of this discourse over migration).”

“The nation is one and belongs to all. People from all parts of the country are and must be free to travel to any other part. Has Bihar not benefitted from the services of nurses from Kerala since long back? Are people from other parts of the country not contributing to the states growth by making use of their talents here?” the chief minister asked.

“Why should then it be seen as a problem if our people go to other parts of the country, make use of their skills and help the local economy flourish while earning a livelihood,” he said.

Migration of Bihari youth to other states was recently flagged as a major political issue for the state by Prashant Kishor, who was earlier the JD(U)'s national vice-president but expelled in January following sustained attacks on his own party for supporting the Citizenship (Amendment) Act.

Former JNU Students' Union president and CPI leader Kanhaiya Kumar, who recently completed a state-wide 'Jan Gan Man Yatra' with the motto "Bihar maange rozgar, nahin chahiye NPR" (Bihar needs jobs, not the National Population Register), made stirring speeches about his experiences as a young student who had to migrate to the national capital for higher studies, for want of good educational opportunities back home, despite coming from a family with limited means.

RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav has named his state-wide tour 'berozgari yatra' and sought to make a "domicile policy" reserving up to 90 percent of jobs and seats in educational institutions for people of the state a poll plank.

LJP chief Chirag Paswan, an NDA ally, has also been on a "Bihar First Bihari First Yatra" with the primary underlying theme being better educational and employment opportunities which could reduce the need for people to leave their home state in search of greener pastures.

(This story was auto-published from a syndicated feed. No part of the story has been edited by The Quint.)

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