Patna: Rubbishing reports that the Rs 12,000 crore-special package for Bihar was linked with current rift among NDA partners and an effort by Congress-led UPA to politically "lure" him, Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Saturday said that development should not be bracketed with politics.
"How can you draw this conclusion that allocation of Rs 12,000 crore under Backward Regions Development Fund (BRGF) is linked with current political going-on (rift between NDA constituents JD(U) and BJP on NDA PM candidate and an effort by Congress-led Centre) to politically lure me," he said addressing 4th foundation day of Bihar Roads Development Corporation.
The Bihar CM said the special fund was the right of the people and not a "gift" to politically lure him. Kumar, whose party JD (U) is pressing for a special category status for Bihar, said though Rs 12,000 crore under BRGF in remaining period of 12th plan was short of Rs 20,000 crore demanded by the state, it still is welcomed as it will give momentum to the state's development.
The Bihar CM also disagreed terming the allocation as "special package" and said it formed part of special fund suggested by a cell in the Planning Commission formed after division of Bihar into Jharkhand in 2000.
Scoffing at parties thanking their leadership in Delhi for the fund, he said "it is the right of the state for which he and his party made hard efforts." State Congress leaders are thanking UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi for the fund while RJD is claiming it was result of efforts of Lalu Prasad.
Kumar reiterated the demand for special category status for Bihar to give a spur to development in the state. He also indirectly hit out at Lalu for making tall claims during political rallies across the state that railway projects started by him in the state were reaching finality. "Is he running a Communist Party like one existing in the present Railway Minister and other Union Ministers not have voice to talk about such projects," he said and ridiculed his rivals' over "tall claims."
He said the leader (Lalu) is announcing that Harnaut rail factory is ready for inauguration. "The project was begun by me in 2003 and it was proposed to be completed in three years but in reality it has taken 10 years for completion," he said adding he would question the Centre about this delay.
Roads Construction Minister Nand Kishore Yadav highlighted faster completion of road projects in Bihar.


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