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Jharkhand angry over Nitish idea of merger with Bihar

December 15, 2009

Jharkhand’s political class has reacted sharply to Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar’s reported statement that Jharkhand should be re-inducted into Bihar.

Reacting to the demand for smaller states, Nitish Kumar had reportedly said that reorganization of states does not mean only division of existing states but could also include merger of one state with another.

“There is a possibility of reorganization of Bihar and Purvanchal of (Uttar Pradesh) and Jharkhand could be merged with Bihar,” the Janata Dal-United (JD-U) leader had been quoted as saying.

Jharkhand was carved out of Bihar in November 2000. Nitish Kumar was then the railway minister in the government of Atal Bihari Vajpayee.

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) insisted that Nitish Kumar had been misquoted.

“Nitish meant that social, economic, political and other viable aspects should be studied before the creation of new states,” BJP president Rajnath Singh told reporters Tuesday.

But Jharkhand’s first chief minister, Babulal Marandi, who now heads the Jharkhand Vikas Morcha-Prajantantrik, said: “The real face of Nitish Kumar has been exposed. His statement indicate his feeling for the people of the state.”

The Congress too has come out against Nitish Kumar.

“Nitish’s statement is against the sentiment of the people of the state. It is an outcome of frustration as the Congress is in a position to form the next government in Jharkhand,” said Pradeep Balmuchu, the Jharkhand Congress president.

The Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) expressed surprise over the reported sstatement.

“The statement seems to be motivated by Bihar politics. Nitish should understand the motive behind the creation of smaller states,” Hemant Soren, a JMM Rajya Sabha MP, told IANS.

Categories: India
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