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BJP alleges social imbalance, criminalisation in New Bihar Cabinet

Sushil Kumar Modi. File

Sushil Kumar Modi. File | Photo Credit: Photo: Twitter/@SushilModi

The BJP on August 16 alleged that the new Cabinet in Bihar reflected "social imbalance" and patronage to those with criminal antecedents in the ‘Mahagathbandhan’, which formed government after Chief Minister Nitish Kumar’s JD(U) severed ties with the saffron party.

Senior BJP leader and former Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Kumar Modi said in a statement that "two communities" had grabbed "more than 33%" of berths in the 33-strong Cabinet that includes the Chief Minister and RJD's Tejashwi Yadav who has returned as his Deputy.

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Mr. Kumar Modi's allusion was to Yadavs and Muslims, largely seen as loyal to the RJD. The two social groups together have 13 Cabinet berths, including those from the Chief Minister's JD(U) and the Congress. The former Deputy CM also referred to serious criminal cases against new inductees such as Lalit Yadav, Surendra Yadav, Ramanand Yadav, and Kartikeya Singh.

He also pointed out that the new Cabinet had "zero representation" from among Telis and upper caste Kayasthas while the number of Rajputs has gone down compared with the previous government of which BJP was a part.

"I wonder what are Nitish Kumar's compulsions ( majboori) behind agreeing to such social imbalance and criminalisation", Mr. Kumar Modi said. In what may be indicative of the future strategy, more than one BJP leader railed against "marginalisation" of ' ati pichhra' (EBCs) in the new dispensation.

While Mr. Kumar Modi underscored that Renu Devi, an EBC, was made Deputy CM by the BJP, no Minister from the sizeable, but disorganised, social group was considered for the top job this time. State BJP president Sanjay Jaiswal claimed in a Facebook post that the number of EBCs in the Cabinet has dropped from six to only three.

BJP OBC Morcha national general secretary Nikhil Anand alleged that "marginalisation" of the EBCs was a "betrayal" on part of Nitish Kumar who "won over this social segment, riding on BJP's back". "Nitish and Tejashwi seem to have declared a revolt ( bagavat) against the EBCs. The BJP will not allow this injustice", he added.

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Printable version | Sep 23, 2022 5:24:09 am | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/bjp-alleges-social-imbalance-criminalisation-in-new-bihar-cabinet/article65775290.ece