PM Narendra Modi at a rally in Saharsa district. (PTI)
Bihar Election 2020 highlights: Ahead of the third and final phase of polling in Bihar on Saturday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has written an open letter to the people of the state. He said that Bihar needs Nitish Kumar government to ensure development in the state. ” Reforms not possible amid mismanagement, anarchy; Nitish Kumar govt needed in Bihar to ensure development schemes continue uninterrupted,” he wrote in an open letter to Bihar.
Meanwhile, Chief Minister and JD(U) Chief Nitish Kumar today said the state Assembly polls would be his last elections. At an election rally in Punria, the three-time chief minister said: “This is my last election.”
Earlier today, mocking Kumar, Lok Janshakti Party leader Chirag Paswan said that current Chief Minister will bow before RJD leader and Mahagathbandhan’s chief ministerial candidate Tejashwi Yadav after the results of the assembly elections are declared on November 10. “The same Prime Minister whom you (Nitish Kumar) were never tired of arguing with or criticising… today you are happy to share a stage with him and bow before him as he asks for votes for you? This shows your greed for power and the greed for the chief minister’s post. After November 10, you will be bowing before Tejashwi Yadav,” he said.
Meanwhile, exuding confidence to win the ongoing Bihar Assembly elections, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday said the youth and women of Bihar see hope in NDA as they prefer good governance. “Poor of Bihar know their ‘sevak’ from a backward society and born in poverty is ensuring that not a single poor sleeps hungry,” he added. He also mentioned that every Bihari has always been vocal for local and NDA is committed towards taking that identity to national and global state. Follow #Politics LIVE updates
53% voter turnout recorded in second phase of elections. Follow highlights here
Voters undergo thermal screening at a polling station as they arrive to cast their votes for the second phase of Bihar Assembly Elections, in Muzaffarpur district, Tuesday, Nov. 3, 2020. (PTI Photo)
Addressing an election rally at Bihariganj, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi attacked the two NDA leaders, Narendra Modi and Nitish Kumar over job creation. He said that Kumar had promised he would provide jobs to the youth and "change" Bihar, but he could not deliver. "When youths today ask Kumar during his public meetings about the jobs he had promised, he threatens them, chases them away and gets them thrashed," Gandhi alleged.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi sharpened his attack on the RJD-led Grand Alliance and said on Tuesday that those who brought “jungle raj” to Bihar and their allies didn’t want people to chant “Bharat Mata ki jai” or “Jai Shri Ram”.
Addressing a rally in Saharsa, which goes to polls in the third phase on November 7, Modi said: “Bihar ko jungle raj banane ke saathi, unki kareebi chahate, kya chahate hai aap ko pata hai? Woh chahate hai aap ‘Bharat Mata ki jai’ ke naaare na lagaye. Sochiye, humara desh, humari Bharat Mata, lekin aaise bhi log humare saamne hai jo Bharat Ma ki jai bolne se, inko bukhaar aa jata hai… Chhatthi maiyan ko poojne wali is dharti par, jungle raj ke saathi chahate hai ki Bharat Ma ki jai ke naare na lage. Woh chahate hai, aap ‘Jai Shri Ram’ bhi na bole (Those who brought jungle raj to Bihar, their associates, do you know what they want? They want that you don’t chant ‘Bharat Mata ki jai’. Our country, our Bharat Mata, but there are such people who get a fever if you chant ‘Bharat Ma ki jai’… On this land, where Goddess Chhatthi is worshipped, they don’t want the ‘Bharat Ma ki jai’ slogan raised. They also don’t want you to chant ‘Jai Shri Ram’.) (Click here to follow our full Bihar polls coverage)
Once upon a time, Bihar’s other Yadav brothers
The tenure of Lalu Prasad and Rabri Devi as chief ministers remained in news both for in-laws and outlaws. When Lalu got married to Rabri from Gopalganj, his in-laws were in fact financially better off, and Lalu was ostensibly picked for his political future.
Once Lalu became CM, and more specifically, after Rabri took over the post, Bihar saw the rise of her brothers Anirudh Prasad alias Sadhu Yadav and Subhash Yadav. The RJD chief gave Sadhu two terms as MLC on sports quota in the mid-1990s, and in the 2004 Lok Sabha polls, Sadhu stood from the Gopalganj seat and won, even as Subhash was nominated to the Rajya Sabha same year.
Around 10 km from Bhagalpur city, the Yadav-dominated twin village of Koyli-Khutaha is affluent by usual standards. Houses are mostly all pucca, motorcycles and SUVs are parked outside many of them, and several bikes bear the blue and red colour number plates used by Bihar Police personnel. But this affluence stops at the door steps: overflowing drains, the absence of a health centre and proper school, and a bank or even an ATM, mark the two hamlets of over 10,000 people, which have hundreds in the Army and police.
There is one aspect though in which Koyli-Khutaha’s story is distinct from other Bihar villages. In April 1991, the two clashed over installation of electricity poles. In the 30 years since, violence over the issue, latest in 2019, has left 20 dead, and 27 sentenced to life.
Among the major political parties, Chief Minister Nitish Kumar's JD(U) is contesting in 35 of the 71 seats, followed by its ally BJP (29), while the opposition RJD has fielded its candidates in 42 and its coalition partner Congress is in the fray in 20 assembly segments.
Lok Janshakti Party, headed by Chirag Paswan, is in the fray in 41 seats, which include all the 35 contested by the JD(U), in keeping with the call given by the young party president, who recently pulled out of the NDA in the state, to "dislodge" the chief minister from power.
Other prominent leaders who have campaigned in the state so far include Union ministers Rajnath Singh and Smriti Irani, Congress leaders Raj Babbar and Shatrughan Sinha, BSP supremo Mayawati and AIMIM chief Asaduddin Owaisi. CPI’s Kanhaiya Kumar also joined the campaign, mainly for candidates of the Left parties. Kumar, in an interview, told Indian Express that Bihar elections are not going to be one-sided and there is much anger, especially against Chief Minister Nitish Kumar.