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Friday, February 21, 2020

‘How did he join the party? Amit Shah asked me to induct him’: Nitish Kumar on Prashant Kishor

Kishor has been critical of JD(U) supporting the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill in parliament and has expressed his vociferous opposition to NRC and NPR on numerous occasions.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi | Updated: January 28, 2020 10:07:59 pm
Prashant Kishor: BJP can win election without raising temple issue, it has got weaker than 2014 JD(U)national vice president Prashant Kishor and Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar. (Express file photo)

Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar Tuesday distanced himself from the recent statement made by JD(U) national vice president Prashant Kishor against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and the National Register of Citizens (NRC).

Fielding questions from the media regarding Kishor’s recent tweet challenging Home Minister Amit Shah to “implement CAA and NRC in the chronological order”, Nitish was quoted by ANI as saying, “Someone wrote a letter I replied to it, someone is tweeting, let him tweet. What do I’ve to do with it? One can stay in the party (JD-U) till he wants, he can go if he wants…Do you know how did he join the party? Amit Shah asked me to induct him.”

Kumar was responding to the media at a press meet over senior party leader Pavan K Varma’s letter to him a few days earlier questioning JD(U)’s “ideological clarity” with regards to their alliance with BJP for Delhi Assembly elections as well as Prashant Kishor’s tweet daring Amit Shah to implement the controversial new citizenship law in the country.

After Nitish’s response, Kishor told ANI: “Nitish Ji has spoken, you should wait for my answer. I will come to Bihar to answer him.”

Kishor has been critical of JD(U) supporting the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill in parliament and has expressed his vociferous opposition to NRC and NPR on numerous occasions.

A few days back, Kishor had tweeted, “Being dismissive of citizens’ dissent couldn’t be the sign of strength of any Govt. @amitshah Ji, if you don’t care for those protesting against #CAA_NRC, why don’t you go ahead and try implementing the CAA & NRC in the chronology that you so audaciously announced to the nation!”

Over the past few weeks, senior leaders Pavan K Varma and Prashant Kishor have stepped up their attacks on tie-up partner BJP over CAA-NPR-NRC and their alliance with the saffron party for Delhi Assembly polls due in February. The Chief Minister has said that Varma was free to chart his future and “go wherever he wants”.

On Varma, the Chief Minister had told reporters: “If anyone had any problem, he could have discussed it at a party meeting or personally. This is not the way to do it. The way he spoke on certain things is not proper. Should I be telling you what he told me? But I have respect for him. He can go wherever he wants. I wish him well.”

Two days ago, Varma went public with a letter he had written to Kumar. Questioning his party’s decision to extend its alliance with the BJP “beyond Bihar” and fight the Delhi Assembly elections together, Varma, who is also the party’s national spokesperson, sought “ideological clarity” from Kumar who he said had expressed “grave apprehensions” in private about the BJP leading the country into a “dangerous space”.

In the letter, Varma said Kumar “on more than one occasion” had expressed “grave apprehensions about the BJP-RSS combine” and that “you had spoken to me at length and with conviction on why Narendra Modi and his policies are inimical for the country. When you were leading Mahagathbandhan, you had openly made a call for ‘RSS-mukt Bharat’.”

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