Mumbai, Oct 4: Dubbing Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar as a 'diamond' during his alliance with the BJP, Union Minister Prakash Javadekar said the veteran JD(U) leader has now lost much of his sheen after joining hands with the Congress and the RJD to take on the BJP in the upcoming state Assembly polls.
The minister also held Congress and RJD chief Lalu Prasad Yadav responsible for Bihar's development stalemate. [Bihar Assembly Elections: Special Coverage]
"Nitish Kumar was a diamond when he was with the BJP and once he quit the alliance and joined hands with Lalu Prasad Yadav, he has been reduced to being (a piece of) coal. He was successful when he was with his partner and now he has failed because we are not with him," Javadekar told PTI.
"When he (Kumar) was in an alliance with the BJP, his performance was good. He ended 'Gunda Raj' from the state. But after our alliance ended, 'Jungle Raj' has once again begun in the state," he said.
Assembly polls will be held in Bihar in five phases from October 12 to November 5. Javadekar will, in the next week campaign in assembly constituencies of three districts, including Gaya and Aurangabad.
"People of Bihar will vote for development and the BJP will come to power with majority. Youth is with the BJP and Nitish's decision to go with Lalu has not gone down well with them," Javadekar claimed.
He further said in states other than Bihar, one usually hears the phrase 'caste the vote' but 'vote for caste' seems to have worked in politics of Bihar.
"But this time, Bihar election will not be contested on the issue of caste. People are fed up of caste politics and are now yearning for development," he said.
To a query, he said Prime Minister Narendra Modi's charisma has not dwindled and that the party will capture Bihar under his leadership.
Modi, while speaking at a rally in Bihar on Friday had said that Bihar must vote for development, which can come only with investment.
"The solution to all problems lies in development and it will set us free from all problems," he had said.
"Development needs investment. The government in Delhi has opened its coffers for Bihar. This is not a favour...it is Bihar's right, which was not given to it so far," the Prime Minister had said.
He had also taken a dig at the Nitish Kumar government, saying they are not trustworthy.