New Delhi: Chasm in NDA widened further on Tuesday as Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar lashed out at BJP for its remark on 2002 Godhra incident.

It is to be noted that BJP spokesperson Meenakshi Lekhi on Monday had said that Bihar CM was the Railway Minister at the time of Godhra train fire incident and he should owe a responsibility for that. Reacting to this on Tuesday, Nitish Kumar said that the incident was concerned to the law and order problem for which state Chief Minister Narendra Modi should take responsibility.

"The job of a Railway Minister is to look after railway safety but the responsibility to look into the problem of public order, law and order belongs to the states," he said.

The slugfest between the two allies over the prospects of Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi’s ascension to the PM post nominee seems to have pushed their 17 years old ties to the point of no return. This is perhaps for the first time when the Bihar Chief Minister directly hit out at his GujarSat counterpart.

Earlier on Sunday, Kumar had targeted Modi without mentioning his name saying that one state's model of development cannot be a possible answer to India's ills. His party Janata Dal-United (JD-U) also set a deadline for the BJP to name its prime ministerial candidate by the year end.

Kumar had thundered that his party would never give up on secularism. He said his party's alliance with the BJP could continue only if "some fundamental issues" were made clear.

“Only one who can carry with him all the diverse sections of people can become the leader of the nation. This was Atal Behari Vajpayee's personality. Now, if there is an attempt to change the path, there is bound to be problems. The country does not run by mere projection. Some persons think they will create a wave and people will accept it," Kumar had said.

The JD-U is the largest constituent of the NDA after the BJP, with 20 members in the Lok Sabha.

Meanwhile, RJD supremo Lalu Prasad Yadav on Monday described Nitish Kumar as ‘parrot of RSS’ saying that Bihar CM was opposing Narendra Modi while praising LK Advani, though both are ‘communalists of the highest order’. He told reporters that Kumar was befooling the minority Muslim community on the Modi issue. "Godhra riots took place in 2002 when Nitish was Railway Minister and he applied all the tricks in his bag to derail the probe into the burning of Sabarmati Express," he had said.

Replying to the reckless charges of RJD supremo, Kumar reminded that a point by point rebuttal was given to Prasad when he had raised the issue in Parliament long back. "I have given him a point by point rebuttal. Lalu Prasad has a habit of speaking much. He must be remembering it quite well that when he was the Railway Minister and had said this, he had got into a maze. I had replied to him in Parliament elaborately on that," Kumar said. "When he became the railway minister in the UPA, he started making strong comments and promises and got entangled in those false assertions," Kumar said hitting out at Prasad.

Despite the verbal exchanges between the NDA allies JD(U) and BJP after Kumar's veiled attack on Narendra Modi, Nitish Kumar was on Tuesday seen sharing dais with BJP leaders -- Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Kumar Modi and Animal Husbandry Minister Giriraj Singh at COMFED, the state government dairy cooperative event. The three were seen talking among themselves at the dais. Both Sushil Kumar Modi and Giriraj Singh had criticized Kumar for his comments on Modi.


Latest News from India News Desk