Former BJP chief Yashwant Sinha practically announced his return to party politics on Saturday, saying he would throw an outfit that would challenge assembly polls expected later this year and dislodge the NDA government in the state to create a “better Bihar”.
Mr. Sinha’s announcement, made at a meeting of his holding “Rashtra Manch“(National Forum) in Patna, was a surprise as he had taken”sanyas“from a political party over two years ago and had promised to work to save democracy in the country.
He left the BJP two years ago.
Mr. Sinha, who held the finance and external affairs portfolios in the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government and severely criticized the policies and operation of the Narendra Modi dispensation, left the door open to voting with the Grand Alliance Bihar, which includes the RJD and the Congress.
“We will welcome everyone who comes to join us,” he said.
“Regarding the elections (of the Bihar Assembly), my party will contest them. It is not that I have any reservations to contest the elections. We (the proposed alliance) will fight the polls of all our forces to create a better Bihar, “said Mr. Sinha.
Asked about parties interested in the alliance he proposed, Sinha said it would be premature to disclose it, but many Bihar leaders were in contact with him about it.
Regarding his party’s name, Sinha said he would announce it as soon as the decision was made.
The seasoned political leader responded curtly when journalists asked him if he would contest the elections himself.
“I will cross this bridge when I get there,” he said.
Holding the NDA government led by Nitish Kumar in Bihar “directly responsible” for the “poor” state, he released a slogan “Behtar Bihar Banao“(Make a better Bihar) to dislodge the current exemption.
“The NDA government in Bihar, led by Nitish Kumar, has not made the desired progress despite having been in power for about 15 years,” he said and held responsible for the “poor state things “in almost all areas affecting people’s lives.
“Until and unless the current exemption is dislodged from the state, it will be quite difficult to work to improve Bihar. Dislodging the state government will be the first step to making a better Bihar”, he said.
Echoing the state government’s claims about development, he said that despite his grand declarations, Bihar remained at the bottom of the list of the country’s various development indicators.
Elaborating, Mr. Sinha said that Bihar has remained at the bottom of the Human Development Index (HDI) for the past 27 years and that the state ranks among the poorest on the poverty index. This is evident from the fact that the annual per capita income of the state is 47,541 rupees, one third of the national average.
He said Bihar is also at the bottom of the list when it comes to providing health services and that his farmers are among the poorest in the country. The state’s share in all of the country’s industries is only 1.5%.
Sinha alleged that law and order have collapsed and that corruption is at its peak in the state because “nothing moves without a bribe”.
“We will publish a weekly fact sheet on issues concerning and affecting various aspects of life … I will present it to the media with the facts and will not strike”thali“or applause,” he said in a veiled reference to such activity during Janata’s curfew on March 22 in support of those on the front lines of the fight against COVID-19 at the Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s appeal.