Modi govt gave Bihar raw deal: Congress

Jairam Ramesh hit out at the prime minister ahead of his poll rallies in Bihar.

New Delhi: The Congress attacked the Modi government on Tuesday over key issues of Bihar, and asked why has the state not been granted special category status as promised.

Congress general secretary Jairam Ramesh hit out at the prime minister ahead of his poll rallies in Bihar.

“Today’s questions for PM Modi as he heads to Bihar: Why hasn’t Bihar been granted Special Category Status as the PM had promised?” Ramesh said on X.

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When will the Modi government address the flooding of the Kosi river and what happened to the airports that the PM promised, he asked.

“Jumla details below: After 10 years in power at the Centre, and 15 years in power in Bihar, why has the Modi Sarkar failed to deliver Special Category Status in the state? As per the Centre’s own Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) Report, Bihar ranked as the poorest state in India, and 52% of the state’s population lacks access to requisite health, education and living standards,” Ramesh said.

In 2013, the Raghuram Rajan Committee recommended a new methodology for devolving funds that is based on a multi-dimensional index instead of SCS to account for a state’s economic backwardness, he pointed out.

“In 2014, when campaigning for his current position, Mr. Modi effectively promised special state status for Bihar. Ten years later, what is the Modi Sarkar waiting for? Why has the PM forgotten the people of Bihar?” he said.

Noting that every monsoon, the Kosi river floods its banks, completely devastating the surrounding area, Ramesh said millions of people are affected by the Kosi’s flooding – standing crops are regularly ruined and families are displaced for months on end.

“The double-engine sarkar builds and rebuilds embankments, only for them to be inevitably washed away during the next flood. Residents have likened this to the ‘goose that lays the golden eggs’ — popular sentiment holds that the BJP’s favoured contractors are receiving kickbacks each time an embankment is rebuilt,” he alleged.

“Apart from this, the BJP government loves to blame upstream Nepal for opening the barrage gates, without making any diplomatic efforts to find a solution. Why is the Modi Sarkar ignoring the plight of millions of flood victims?” he said.

Has the misery of people in Mithilanchal and Kosi become another opportunity for the BJP’s monetary gain, Ramesh asked.

“PM Modi promised an airport in Purnia on 18th August, 2015. Six years and three Nitish Kumar U-turns later, his government is yet to fulfil the promise. In Muzaffarpur, the Modi Sarkar promised a fully operational airport by Diwali 2023. Today, not a single flight lands in the airport. In Bhagalpur, the Administration has barely started the process to set up a commercially viable airport – after years of empty promises from the BJP and JDU,” he said.

For a Government that claims to have focused on infrastructure development, why has the Modi government given Bihar such a poor deal, Ramesh asked.

“Why have these three airport projects been neglected for the last ten years?” Ramesh said and asked the PM to break his “silence” on these issues.

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