Bihar Chief Minister Jitan Ram Manjhi on Saturday included two more scheduled castes — Dhari and Dhadi — in the Mahadalit category.
Manjhi, who held his third cabinet meeting in a week, also gave his nod to a pension scheme for journalists and sanctioned the over Rs 300 crore Bailey Road flyover — a project started during Nitish Kumar’s tenure as CM. Manjhi also wrote a letter to PM Narendra Modi asking for Rs 11,000 crore for the state.
This prompted a joint delegation of the JD(U), RJD and Congress to go to Raj Bhavan. The delegation claimed the “flurry of announcements may not have legal validity”.
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Former JD(U) minister Bijay Kumar Choudhary who led the delegation said, “How can Manjhi make a series of announcements when there is political instability and he has been asked to take a floor test?”
Two MLAs from the Nitish camp — Rajesh Singh and Dawood Ali — have also taken exception to the Manjhi camp giving their names to the Assembly secretariat as speakers who “will speak in favour of Manjhi government”. The two MLAs denied this and threatened to take constitutional remedy if required.
Meanwhile, RJD Madhepura MP Rajesh Ranjan alias Pappu Yadav and Lalu Prasad’s youngest son Tejashwi Prasad Yadav locked horns over support to Manjhi during the floor test. While the RJD has said its 24 MLAs will support Nitish, Pappu Yadav has been telling party legislators to “follow their conscience” and vote for a Dalit CM.
Tejashwi shot back saying the Madhepura MP was “hurting the party’s interests with his remarks”.
Pappu Yadav responded: “Being the son or daughter of Lalu Prasad does not make one his political heir. I am his political heir.”