Days after acknowledging Bihar chief minister as ‘bade bhai’ (elder brother), Union minister of state and RLSP chief Upendra Kushwaha took a U-turn to train his guns on Nitish Kumar, asking him to share the “status and content” of his DNA test.
With this, Kushwaha has tried to plough into Kumar’s ‘warm relationship’ with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who had taken a jibe at the chief minister during a rally in Muzaffarpur in July, 2015 questioning his political DNA after the former had snapped ties with the 17-year-old ally in 2013.
Kushwaha was apparently put off by the chief minister’s remark during a function organised by a media house in the state capital Saturday, where he had parried a question on the Union minister’s recent claim about his unwillingness to continue as CM after 2020. “Batchit ka star itna ‘neeche’ mat giraeeye (don’t allow the level of debate to dip so low), Kumar had said, while stating that he enjoyed a very warm relationship with the PM and BJP chief Amit Shah.
Union minister Kushwaha not only brought the DNA jibe back into currency but also took a dig at Kumar, questioning how the descendants of Luv-Kush (two sons of Sita) be high and low born at the same time. Traditionally, Kurmis trace their ancestry to Luv while Kushwahas claim to be the descendants of Kush.
“How can ‘bada bhai’ Nitish Kumar be a high born (uchch) and younger brother Upendra Kushwaha a ‘neech’ (low born)?” he asked, while speaking at the party’s ‘Halla bol, darwaza khol’ campaign at Muzaffarpur.
“I am hurt by your remark. If I am a ‘neech’, it is not for you to decide. You must explain the reason for your insinuation. Is it because I vouch for social justice or is it because of issues like reservation in judiciary and status of education?” he said, adding, “Such an issue has to be settled by the people.”
Kushwaha said it was now for the chief minister to come clean on the DNA issue as JD(U) leaders had sent the samples of their hair and nails, as a mark of protest, to Delhi for test. “I am asking you, on behalf of the people, to bring the results of DNA test in public domain,” he said, casting doubts over the entire exercise.