By Dr P R Prasad
Mother of All Rallies – Nitish’s Adhikar Rally is being organized in Patna on 4th Nov to press the Central Govt for grant of special status to Bihar for its speedy economic development. It is expected that over a lakh people from all the corners of the state will participate in the rally. JD(U) leaders are leaving no stone unturned to make the rally successful. Over 10000 policemen have been deputed in Patna to maintain law and order.
It is reported that seven special trains, 15000 buses and several other four-wheelers have been pressed into service to carry the people. It is also reported that the expenses to be incurred in organizing the rally may run into several crores. Thousands of huge posters and hoardings have sprung up all over the state inviting people to join the rally. Some posters depict Nitish Kumar as Arjuna and Sharad Yadav as Lord Krishna. Even photos of Munna Shukla and his JD(U) MLA wife Annu Shukla have been put alongside those of Nitish Kumar. Munna Shukla is ex-JD(U) MLA accused in several criminal cases and is lodged in Muzzafarpur jail after being convicted for killing of Brij Bihari Prasad, the then science and technology minister in the Rabri Devi cabinet. Munna Shukla has also been accused of demanding extortion money of Rs.2 crore in the name of upcoming Adhikar rally. Police is reportedly investigating the extortion demand by Munna Shukla from the jail. In this connection, one warden and five policemen have been suspended. In an another incident, Munna Shukla while being taken out of the prison for production in a fast track court in connection with another murder case, distributed pamphlets and spoke to the people present in the court premises with folded hands urging them to attend the Patna rally. This has also led to the suspension of the sub-inspector of police and other constables accompanying him.
The rally is also likely to be webcast and there seems no doubt that the “Adhikar Rally” will be a grand success. However, criticisms from some corners cannot also be entirely ignored. “The Adhikar rally is being organized by the JD(U) as a political agenda of Nitish Kumar and he cannot get away for the failure of his government on all fronts by passing the buckon the Centre” – says Tariq Anwar. Lalu Prasad has slammed the ruling JD(U), saying it is using the rally as an ‘Adhikar’ or ‘right’ to extort money, even criminals like Munna Shukla and Anant Singh want ‘Adhikar’ to loot. Lalu has also accused the Nitish-led government of institutionalizing rangdari tax.
Well, whatever be the arguments and perceptions, it is disturbing to note that tainted politicians have come in the forefront demanding – अपना अधिकार लेके रहेंगे. I was recently watching a TV debate show on Munna Shukla’s poster with Nitish Kumar. I was surprised at the JD(U) and BJP representatives’ justifications and arguments. I am giving below three news videos below on this subject. You need to watch the second video with patience as it is a bit longer giving the entire TV debate I am referring to. Does it not create suspicion in the minds of the people about the true objective of the rally and the demand of special status to Bihar? Many people say that it is more of a show of strength of Nitish Kumar than the demand of special status.
Jailed former MLA Munna Shukla distributes pamphlets for Nitish’s Adhikar Rally
Nitish Kumar’s picture appears with Munna Shukla in Adhikar Rally poster
Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar fighting to save his name and image from being ignominiously linked to former JD(U) MLA Munna Shukla