Patna, June 19 (ANI): Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) supremo Lalu Prasad Yadav on Tuesday took potshots at Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar over his recent statement in which he asked his alliance partner, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), to name a prime ministerial candidate with secular credentials.
Yadav said that he was unaware of any leader in the National Democratic Alliance (NDA), who fits the bill.
Whatever Nitish Kumar has said, only he can explain. Who is secular in the NDA? Who will say in this country that the BJP is secular? That is why Nitish Kumar is making false accusations on me, he said.
Yadav further said Nitish Kumar does a lot of drama, and stated that he does not consider anyone secular in the NDA or BJP.
If Nitish Kumar is pointing towards Narendra Modi, then I do not know. Who is secular in the BJP? Either Narendra Modi or Advani, are these leaders actually secular? Nitish Kumar does a lot of drama, he said.
Seeking to rest all speculation, Nitish Kumar in an interview to a national daily has asserted that he is not in the prime ministerial race. However, without taking names, he has also made it clear that JD (U) will not accept the leadership of Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi.
He insisted that the NDA should name its Prime Ministerial candidate before the 2014 Lok Sabha polls and the candidate must have secular credentials and a liberal frame of mind.
NDA should declare its candidate in advance. This leader should be acceptable to every constituent of the alliance. To me, the leader of the coalition should have secular credentials. It should be someone who has absolute faith in democratic values, he said.
In a multi-religious and multi-lingual country like ours, the leader should not have rough edges in his personality. An alliance can win the confidence of the people only if the leader is seen as accommodating, he added.
Nitish Kumar's candid comments appear to be aimed at setting the rules of the game before the NDA starts to mull over the strategy to take on the UPA in 2014.
The latest war-of-words seems to have been sparked off by Modi's recent comments on Bihar.
Speaking at a public rally in Rajkot, Modi had reportedly said, Bihar, at one point of time, was a political and spiritual leader of the country, but it slipped into socio-economical backwardness ever since the casteist leadership took centrestage. (ANI)