Left parties plan Bihar bandh against CAA on Dec. 19

Left parties in Bihar will observe a Statewide bandh on Thursday to protest the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and plans for a pan-India National Register of Citizens.

Leaders of the Mahagathbandhan (grand alliance), barring the Rashtriya Janata Dal, met in Patna on Wednesday and declared their support for the Left parties’ proposed bandh. The State’s principal Opposition party, the RJD, too has given a call for a Bihar bandh on December 21 for which too the grand alliance’s leaders have extended their support.

“The Narendra Modi government got the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill passed in Parliament in a hurried manner to reap electoral benefits in Jharkhand Assembly elections,” Amarjit Kaur, national secretary of the Communist Party of India, told journalists in Patna. “The decision to organise a Bihar bandh on Thursday has been taken to protest against the Modi government’s religion based divisive politics,” the CPI leader added. Earlier, the RJD had called for a Bihar bandh on December 21, and when the efforts by the grand alliance partners to bring both the RJD and the Left parties on a common platform in view of their bandh calls failed, the Left parties announced a separate date for their bandh.

“We’ve come on a common platform to declare our support to the Left parties and the RJD too in their bandh call on December 19 and 21 respectively,” Jitan Ram Manjhi, leader of the Hindustani Awam Morcha (Secular) which is a member of the grand alliance, told journalists in Patna. “This will give a message that the mahagathbandhan in Bihar is intact and united,” the former chief minister added.

Leaders of other alliance parties including the Congress, the Rashtriya Lok Samata Party and Vikashil Insaan Party too attended the meeting to extend their support to the bandh calls. However, no leader from the RJD participated in the meeting.

“We had invited the RJD’s leader Tejashwi Yadav or its State president Jagdanand Singh to participate in our meeting but they are busy in the campaign for the Jharkhand Assembly polls and so did not come,” added Mr. Manjhi. Senior State Congress leader Akhilesh Singh separately asserted, “we’ll support the RJD’s bandh call too”.

Leaders of the State’s ruling NDA asserted that the bandh calls on different dates showed that the mahagathbandhan’s unity had fallen apart. “If they’re united they should have given the bandh call on a single day,” said JD(U) leader Rajiv Ranjan. “Anyway, their bandh call will have no impact in the State as people have rejected them [the Opposition parties],” he added. State BJP leaders too echoed a similar view. However, local residents in different parts of the State, especially in the border areas of Purnea, Kishanganj and Saharsa, have been vehemently opposing the CAA and NRC in large numbers over the last few days.

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Printable version | Apr 10, 2020 12:46:38 PM |

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