PM calls Nitish after questioning his secular credentials

May 12th, 2009 - 8:10 pm ICT by ANI  

Manmohan Singh New Delhi, May 12 (ANI): In order to gather numbers for a Congress-led government at the Centre, Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh today called up Nitish Kumar to discuss the Kosi relief fund, after questioning his secular credentials a day before.

Sources said that call was made to mend fences with the Bihar CM to gather the requisite numbers in the post poll scenario.

Feelers have also been sent UP Chief Minister Mayawati, though she has denied that she is in talks with either the Congress or the BJP for a post poll alliance.

Commenting on Bihar Chief Minister on Monday, the Prime Minister said Nitish Kumar “professes” to be a secular leader but there are doubts after he shared a dais with Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi.

Nitish had rebutted Dr. Singh and had criticized the Central government over the Kosi relief funds, and accused the Congress party of playing politics over last year’s devastating floods in the state.

“The centre had given immediate relief of Rs.1,000 crore (Rs.10 billion) when the Kosi floods devastated Bihar. Later, the central government sent a letter that you (Bihar) have enough money for the relief work so now return the Rs.1,000 crore,” Kumar said.

“People have seen the Kosi tragedy with their eyes, and asking back the relief money is injustice. We had asked for a Rs.14,800 crore package for rehabilitation but were granted only Rs.1,000 crore,” Kumar added.

The Congress is also trying to get the Left on its side. The CPM which had stubbornly refused to support a Congress led government till a few weeks back, also seems to be setting the stage for a post-poll alliance with the Congress. (ANI)

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