BJP president and Union Home Minister Amit Shah reiterated that Nitish Kumar would be the chief ministerial face of the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) in Bihar. Addressing a rally in support of the Citizenship (Amendment) Act in Vaishali, Bihar on Thursday, Shah said Prime Minister Narendra Modi would lead the NDA at the Centre and Nitish Kumar in the state.
Taking potshots on the Opposition, especially Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) and the Congress, he said it was the NDA which had led the state from “jungle raj” (euphemism for misgovernance) to “janata raj” (people’s rule) from 2005 to 2020. Dismissing speculations of a possible rift within the two coalition partners (the BJP and JD-U) of the NDA, he asserted, the bond was “unbreakable”.
He lashed out at the Opposition leaders, RJD, AAP, Congress and Trinamool Congress, for all communal violence that had taken place in different parts of India to protest the Citizenship (Amendment) Act or CAA. “The opposition parties engineered anti-CAA riots, which forced the BJP to hold rallies across the country to apprise the people of their nefarious designs,” he said. “CAA intends to help those who came to India after their women were raped in front of their eyes. Their properties were snatched away. Their places of worship were desecrated,” said Shah. The CAA is the law which seeks to fast-track citizenship to Hindu, Sikh, Jain, Parsi, Buddhist and Christian refugees from Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Bangladesh, who came to India on or before December 31, 2014.
Talking about Congress’ double standard, Shah said the Ashok Gehlot government in Rajasthan had included in its manifesto the plan to protect the interest of religious minorities coming from neighbouring countries. “When they do it, it is fine, when we do it to protect their interest, we are called communal,” he said. The home minister also blamed the Congress for dividing the country on religious lines.
He also spoke about some bold decisions Modi had taken in scrapping Article 370 and 35A in Jammu and Kashmir. In an oblique reference to the disturbance at Delhi’s Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), Shah said those from the “tukde-tukde gang”, who talk to dividing India, would be put behind bars. He also announced that construction activity for the Ram temple at Ayodhya would begin in the next four months.