Nitish urges PM to hold meeting on Maharashtra issue

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Patna, Mar 5 (UNI) Reacting to the write-up of Shiv Sena Chief Bal Thackeray published in 'Saamna', Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar today said such article was against the nation's interest and urged Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to convene a meeting of Bihar and Maharashtra leaders.

Mr Kumar said the incidents of attack on the Hindi speaking people, especially Biharis in Maharashtra, were not in the interest of the nation and the Prime Minister should immediately intervene into the situation.

'' The statements of the vested interests were leaving an adverse impact and in such a situation, leaders of both the states should discuss to solve the problem,'' the Chief Minister said, adding the Centre's failure to tackle the situation proved the Congress' ''silent support'' in aggravating the situation in Maharashtra.

'' It was the Centre's responsibility to protect and safeguard the interest of the entire country,'' Mr Kumar asserted and urged Dr Singh to issue strict directives to Maharashtra Chief Minister Vilasrao Desmukh for providing safety and security to the Biharis and North Indians living in the state.

The situation was ripe enough for the Prime Minister to initiate action on the issue of Maharashtra, he said and added that the leaders should use the words cautiously while giving statements.

He said the people of Bihar are laborious and talented and they helped in the development of the Maharashtra and other states and described Bal Thackeray's statement was ''deplorable''.

Mr Kumar had also shot off a letter to the PM yesterday, requesting him to look into the happenings in Mumbai and other areas of Maharashtra and ensure that relief was given to the persons who had suffered in the brutal attacks against Hindi-speaking people.

UNI RS-KKS RL AS2023

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