JD-U, BJP again in war of words over caste census


After a few days of peace, Bihar’s ruling allies, the JD-U and the BJP, again started taking potshots at each other with JD-U Parliamentary Board Chairman Upendra Kushwaha’s claim of disputes among the BJP on the caste census drawing an angry retort.

The exchange of words between the two had seen a stop after an all-party delegation from the state met Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi on August 23 to present views on the demand for the caste census, made by Chief Minister Nitish Kumar.

“A number of leaders in BJP are in favour of caste based census to be conducted in the country while some others are against it. I believe that BJP should rectify its internal politics,” Kushwaha said on Wednesday.

“The caste based census is the needs of the hour. It should be conducted in the country,” he said, noting that the JD-U, the RJD and other political parties in Bihar have the same view on this issue, and “we are expecting positive results from the Centre” following the meeting with the PM.

Kushwaha also said that the caste based census has nothing to do with any religion.

BJP MLA Hari Bhuson Thakur, however, sharply reacted to Kushwaha’s statement.

“JD-U is divided into three power centres and he is wanting to grab one of the slots. This indicates that there is a conflict in the JD-U and not in the BJP. Hence, Upendra Kushwaha should take care of his own house before commenting on others,” Thakur, who represents Bispi in Madhubani district, said.