Patna: After accusing BJP of trying to cause damage to “Brand Bihar” which the government headed by him assiduously charted out and popularized, former CM Nitish Kumar has said that the 2015 assembly election in state will be “Brand Bihar versus BJP”.
“The political activists of Bihar must on one hand ensure that the ideas of Brand Bihar are realized on the ground and on the other must work to defeat BJP in elections and stall any expansion of their ‘one-eyed (narrow)’ vision of the society. So, the elections in Bihar are going to be a battle between Brand Bihar and BJP. And people of Bihar must unite in this battle,” said Nitish in his Facebook post on Tuesday.
Possibly taking a cue from PM Narendra Modi, who, in his capacity as Gujarat CM aggressively played the Gujarati pride card to mobilize public support for years and in the process marketed his “Brand Gujarat”, Nitish, too, is trying to play the Bihari pride card to attract people. After parting ways with the BJP over an year ago and undergoing crushing defeat in Lok Sabha election two months back, Nitish, who served Bihar for about eight and a half years in alliance with the BJP, is cautioning people that the saffron party will continue the pursuit of electoral politics by instigating fear and polarization.
He said, “Those opposing it (polarization) must oppose not by counter polarization but by showcasing an alternate vision of society that lives in harmony, makes economic progress, continues infrastructure development, enables agrarian prosperity and most importantly provides quality education to its children and employment to its youth. This is the India that will be strong from within and radiant from outside.”
Nitish said Brand Bihar is the idea of building a state where the best ideas in society thrive and show the way to the country. “We must show the way in how millions of youth will get skilled and earn respectable livelihood. We must show the way in how small and marginal farmers and farm workers can collectively usher in the second green revolution (rainbow revolution in real sense) in the country. We must show the way in how electricity lights up and charges the economy of villages still living in darkness. We must show the way in how people can collaborate to bring total sanitation and live in clean and green villages and cities. We must show the way in how the lines of caste and religion can be breached to build communities of collaboration and self-esteem.”
Nitish has made it a prestige issue to see the defeat of BJP, be it the Rajya Sabha bypoll last month, by election to 10 assembly seats next month or the assembly polls in October-November 2015. “I must tell the 11 crore people of Bihar and especially our youth that we will work together to inspire the whole nation with Brand Bihar,” he said and added that BJP, blinded by the divisive agenda and recent successes of divisive mobilization, was trying to destroy the Brand Bihar and sully the image of the state.