Nityanand Rai Tuesday said if Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) comes to power, “terrorists would escape Kashmir and take shelter in Bihar”
By Qamar Farooqui
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is at it again. Minister of State for Home Nityanand Rai Tuesday said if Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) comes to power, “terrorists would escape Kashmir and take shelter in Bihar”. Isn’t it similar to statement made by Amit Shah in 2015, then BJP president, where he had said if the BJP lost election, then its defeat would be “celebrated in Pakistan by bursting crackers.”
At a rally on Tuesday in Vaishali, Rai said that the RJD formed government then the terrorists in Kashmir will seek shelter in Bihar. He added, “We won’t let that happen.” The communal barb by the BJP leader is seems to be the beginning of what is being anticipated by all.
Opposition Rashtriya Janata Dal reacted sharply on the remarks saying that the saffron party was trying to deflect attention from pressing issues. RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav said, “Unemployment rate in Bihar is 46.6 per cent. What does he have to say on the terror of unemployment, poverty, starvation & migration? What did their double-engine govt do in 15 years? It’s their attempt to divert from agenda but we want to contest election on agenda.” Another party leader Manoj Kumar Jha however, turned the table on the BJP. He said that Rai’s had raised serious question to the office of Home Minister Amit Shah.
“Muslim, Pakistan, Kashmir, terrorism, mandir-masjid etc are some of the core issues the BJP keeps raising election after election. Has the party ever raised the issues of unemployment, economic failure, development? It simply cannot fight elections on these issues. The party knows it has done nothing for the people,” said Jatin Ram, who is an independent thinker. He, however, said, “People of the state never buys such barbs.”
Other local leaders in the party believe that such statements rarely pay to the party, hinting that the people here are sharply divided on caste lines. “Communalism is not workable in elections,” said a party activist who wished not to be named.
Many analysts believe the controversial statement would not help the party, referring to the drubbing defeat of the saffron brigade in the 2015 elections despite “brazen communal overtones” of the top leadership.
“BJP rarely misses any elections when it does not rake up such issues. While every political parties stand on one page on the issue of terrorism, the statement clearly gives divisive message,” said Syed Shahbaz, a Patna-based journalist.