Central assistance to Bihar not a special favour: Advani

Motihari/Muzaffarpur (Bihar), Oct. 19 (ANI): Senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader L.K.Advani on Tuesday said neither Prime Minister Manmohan Singh nor UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi should project central assistance for Bihar as a special favour.

"They should know that central funds do not belong to the Congress. It is the hard-earned money of the tax payers and the people of the country," said Advani without naming either Singh or Gandhi.

"There is a federal system in India and in keeping with it, the Centre has to provide funds to states without any discrimination. The federal structure has to be respected at all cost," he said at election meetings in Motihari and Muzaffarpur.

He urged Prime Minister Singh to come forward for an open debate on the issue of central assistance with Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and senior party leader Arun Jaitley rather than harping about the fact that central assistance had been misused in Bihar.

Advani described Kumar as Bihar's most able chief minister till date.

Claiming that the NDA government in the state deserved a reward, he said, Kumar had come up to the expectations and aspirations of the people and deserved another five-year term to bring Bihar in the category of the most developed states.

"We expect that the people of the state will repose their faith in Kumar and Sushil Kumar Modi (deputy chief minister) and give another chance to serve them," he said.

Opposing promotion of 'parivarwad (dynastic rule)' in politics and alleging that the RJD was hand-in-glove with the Congress, Advani said: "The Congress is equally responsible for the jungle raj and anarchy that gripped the state during the 15-year rule of Lalu Prasad-Rabri Devi."

Advani also criticized Dr. Singh and Sonia Gandhi for supporting Jammu Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah's statement that the state had not merged with India, "but only acceded to it under certain conditions and under an agreement." (ANI)

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