Beef row: Lalu Prasad insulted Yadavs, says Narendra Modi
Munger/ Begusarai: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday launched a blistering attack on RJD supremo Lalu Prasad, saying his beef eating remark is an 'abuse' and 'huge insult' to Yaduvanshis (Yadav clan) and asked people of Bihar to reject the grand secular alliance warning it will bring 'jungle raj 2'.
Modi, who has been silent on the lynching of a man in Dadri over rumours of eating beef despite widespread outrage, scoffed at Lalu's explanation that he made the beef remarks under the influence of some 'shaitan' (devil). "I wonder the devil got only his (Lalu) body to enter. I want to know how the shaitan got the address (of Lalu). The devil got no other body in entire Bihar, India and the whole world except that of his. And he also welcomed the devil as if some relative has come.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressing an election rally in Begusarai on Thursday. Pic/PTI
Addressing rallies in Munger, Begusarai and Samastipur, Modi castigated the RJD chief over his 'Hindus also eat beef' remark. "What all is he saying. What all Yadavs eat? Whatever position Lalu rose to, it was because of these Yaduvanshis and he insulted them. What kind of abuses you are hurling at them. Is it not an insult of Yadavs and Bihar? Do not humiliate the Yaduvanshis so much? Laluji, these Yaduvanshis helped you to come to power," said Modi.
Insisting that Lalu cannot absolve himself of his beef remark, he said,"People of Bihar have to find out why the devil came to Lalu only. What were his bad habits due to which it happened. Do we have place for such people in Bihar. "So far we were fighting (political rivals) human beings. Now a devil has entered a human body which is after us." The RJD chief, who had made the controversial remark in the aftermath of the Dadri lynching, made a quick about turn, saying his tongue seemed to have been possessed by the devil in a moment of weakness.
The remarks had created a consternation in the grand alliance as the leaders felt that this could help BJP polarise votes in its favour. Amid a realisation that an undivided Muslim-Yadav combination could lead to problems for it, BJP-led NDA is keen to counter the RJD chief's influence in the community.
Referring to Dwarka connection of Lord Krishna in Gujarat, Modi projected Lalu as a leader who does not honour 'true Yaduvanshi tradition' and alleged that he not only insulted them but everybody in Bihar. "I come from the land of Gujarat. Dwarka is the land of Lord Krishna where people worship cows. They brought white revolution. As as far the question of following the true Yaduvanshi tradition is concerned, it being done there. And here the leaders are meting out this kind of insult to Yaduvanshis. What kind of abuses he is heaping on them?
Calling the grand alliance of JDU-RJD and Congress a 'mahaswarthgathbandhan' (alliance of great opportunism), Modi asked the electorate to reject them noting that they ruled the state for 60 years and were responsible for its backwardness. "It is time that people vote for the vikas raj (development) of the BJP. This election is a fight between jungle raj and vikas raj," he said.
Modi, who is under attack from the grand alliance for allegedly insulting people of Bihar through his DNA barb against Nitish Kumar, repeatedly sought to project Lalu's beef remarks as an affront not only to the entire Yadav community whose primary occupation has been rearing cows, but to the entire state.
He also used the death anniversary of Jayaprakash Narayan today to attack Nitish and Lalu, saying those who once sang paeans of the socialist leader have now joined hands with Congress which had sent JP to jail during Emergency. Alleging that Congress is trying to make a 'backdoor' entry into Bihar politics by aligning with JD(U) and RJD after having lost its own relevance, Modi questioned both Lalu and Nitish over their commitment to 'JP' who fought against Congress his entire life. "Congress imposed Emergency and put JP behind bars where he fell ill and as a result passed away early... .Standing by the same Congress, they are now abusing BJP. Congress ruled the state for 35 years followed by 15 years of RJD and 10 years of JD-U," he said.
Nitish came to power promising to end jungle raj. "He has now joined hands with Lalu to bring Jungle Raj 2. What relationship is there between this Bada Bhai and Chhota Bhai.. The three parties that destroyed Bihar have come together," he said, adding that the hudge number of people seen in BJP rallies will sweep the three parties away.
Under constant attack from the grand alliance over RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat's demand for a review of the reservation policy -- a contention quickly rejected by BJP -- Modi attempted to project the Bihar election as a fight beyond caste issue and reached out to the youth. "Political pundits will be forced to change their thinking in Bihar. For the first time it will be (fought) above caste considerations. It will be fought on the issue of youth and development. These will be the central issues now," he said attacking the rivals for unemployment and poverty in the state.
Like in the last Lok Sabha polls when BJP-led NDA won 31 out of 40 Lok Sabha seats, people should give a clear mandate to it in the assembly polls. There is a view that if the caste factor dominates in the election, it could help the grand alliance. Thus BJP is trying to reorient the focus in Bihar assembly polls to the issue of development and aspirations of the youth, projecting Modi as a mascot of change.
Referring to noted Hindi poet Ramdhari Singh 'Dinkar', Modi said his words that 'singhasan khali karo, janata aati hai' (vacate power, the common man is coming) have been taken seriously by the youth of Bihar who want a change. "Should those, who have ruined the state for 60 years, be allowed to come back to power again? If employment has to be generated and development has to come to the state, the jungle raj should not get another chance in Bihar," said Modi.
"Let us remember Jayaprakash Narayan, Sri Krishna Singh (Bihar's first Chief Minister)and Ramdhari Singh Dinkar and take a vow to bring vikas raj in Bihar," he said. Modi said that Lalu is repeating the same dialogues, which he used to make 15 years ago and did nothing new 'except bringing his two sons' in the forefront.
Rejecting Opposition criticism that his government was catering only to the rich, the Prime Minister insisted that his government's schemes are meant to uplift the poor who need the government and not the rich.
Referring to alleged crimes during RJD regime, he said kidnapping had become an industry. People refused to venture out after sunset even during festivals. Nobody bought a new vehicle fearing it would be snatched by goons." He suggested that after Nitish and Lalu joined hands, such incidents have risen. "Figures of the Bihar government show that between January and July 4,000 kidnappings have taken place. Do you want jungle raj or development...Bihar has youth and water as its main assets. "But both have not been utilised for development. Give us a chance, come out in large numbers to vote. Ensure that no devil returns," he said.
Referring to the Rs 1.65 lakh crore package announced by the Centre for Bihar, Modi alleged that the state government is creating hindrances in its implementation. "But people won't allow this to happen as they want growth development," he said.