Patna: In an obvious attack at RJD, former deputy chief minister Sushil Modi said, “During their (Lalu Yadav) times IAS officers were made to rub and offer tobacco and carry spitting pots for Lalu Yadav.” “Do they want that kind of Bureaucracy”, Modi quipped at a press conference in Patna on Tuesday.
The RJD has been all guns blazing against Nitish Kumar for allegedly centralizing powers in his own hands.
Earlier social welfare minister Madan Sahni who is from the JDU had offered to resign on the grounds that the authorities don’t listen to him.
He had gone on record saying that there was no point being a minister in Nitish Cabinet when the authorities just don’t listen to him and it was useless just using the official bungalow and official vehicle.
Sahni was adamant about resigning till he met Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar.
After the meeting, the entire issue was swept under the carpet. But the allegations by Sahni has given the Opposition, the desired ammunition to nail down Nitish Kumar on the so-called autocratic ways of bureaucracy in Bihar.
Tejaswhi Yadav has been alleging that in Bihar, not a single project can be cleared or any work done can be done unless ‘RCP tax’ is paid.
He has alleged that the bureaucrats in Bihar have formed a closely-knit group that is answerable to only Bihar CM.
Earlier, some BJP leaders had echoed similar sentiments but they were silenced.
The RJD, however, has been raking up the issue that bureaucracy in Bihar is not just autocratic but is callous to the needs of the people.
These allegations have always been refuted by the JDU but ironically when the allegation came from a minister from their own party the JDU preferred to maintain a stoic silence on the issue.
Sushil Modi has once again kindled the debate by drawing parallels between the bureaucracy at the time of JDU and RJD.
The RJD has however reacted sharply on the issue. Bhai Birendra, a senior leader of the RJD rubbished the allegations of Modi and said, “All Modi is saying is absurd and false. It was a government of the people and the downtrodden. And whenever these people went with their problems to meet the officials the officials were forced to act. These people were offered seats by the officials. Today not even MLA or other elected representatives are being offered any seat by the officials. The MLAs and ministers are cribbing because of this. “
The debate assumes significance amidst allegations from various quarters of highly centralized governance under Nitish Kumar where possibly the ministers have little say and it’s Nitish Kumar along with his close coterie who calls the shots, as alleged by the opposition.