After strong protests, Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and state Education Minister have received invitation for foundation laying ceremony of Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) centre at Kisanganj on Thursday but Mr. Kumar is yet to decide whether he will go or not.
Separate invitation letters from Union Human Resources Development Minister M.M. Pallam Raju and Vice Chancellor of AMU reached the Chief Minister as well state Education minister P.K. Shahi late last evening.
Mr. Shahi and Secretary to the Chief Minister Atish Chandra, confirmed to PTI on Wednesday that the invitation was received.
The education minister said a decision on whether to go for the function will be taken after discussion with the Chief Minister, who is in Banka in connection with JD(U)’s ‘Sankalp Rally’ and will return to Patna in the evening.
UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi will be laying the foundation stone of the AMU centre at Kisanganj on Thursday. Mr. Raju will accompany her.
The Bihar education minister, who had sent a strong protest letter to the Union HRD minister on Monday for keeping state government away from the function “out of politics”, said “We will take a decision whether to go for the ceremony or not after assessing sincerity of the Centre to the project.
“We will see whether they are sincere towards the project and have made provision of fund for it or is it only a political discourse in view of coming elections before taking a decision,” he said.
Mr. Shahi also made a scathing attack on the Union HRD minister for writing in the invitation letter that AMU centre at Kisanganj was a long pending project.
“He seems ill informed about the subject,” Mr. Shahi said.
The fact is that initially, AMU thought of opening the centre at Katihar, but Mr. Kumar suggested Kisanganj as location which was ultimately accepted.
“Till this time, the Centre was nowhere in the picture and now the minister is saying its a long-pending project,” he said and asked Mr. Raju “why the Centre did not made provision of fund or take other steps even when the state had made available 224 acres of land to them two years ago?”