Areraj: In an apparent jibe at his arch rival and the RJD supremo Lalu Prasad, Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Monday said that the days of ‘oiling lathis’ have gone by, it was the time for attaining knowledge.

"The days of oiling lathis have gone is the era of knowledge and the people should educate their children properly to take advantage of growing career opportunities," he said. The Chief Minister said thi s while addressing a public meeting at Someshwarnath high school in Bihar's Areraj before winding up the four-day long Seva Yatra to the district.

The state government has been giving various incentives to the students to take up studies and parents should encourage their wards to go to the schools and study well, Kumar said.

By referring to the oiling of lathis, Kumar was alluding to the lathi rally of the RJD in 2003 at the Gandhi Maidan.

In a dig at the opposition for their criticism of the state government, he said that it will not be of any good to any one if his detractors only make statements by sitting in Patna and trying to pit one against another to settle brownie points.

On the incidents of the people venting their anger during his seva yatra on one issue or another, Kumar said that that the fact that the people have been venting their ire was reflection of the state government's commitment to bring positive changes in the society.

Earlier, the people had put off their thinking caps and forgotten about their right to protest apparently due to fear of persecution from the then rulers, he said, adding that the people were well withing their rights to speak on any issue.