Question raised over JD(U)’s MLC nominee

| | Patna

The immediate fallout of the hugely successful “Deen bachao, Desh bachao” conference held here on Sunday was the nomination of a little known person to the Legislative Council by the ruling JD(U) hours after the conference organised by Imarat Shariah was over.

Possibly it any was the impact of the unprecedented crowd of about half a million Muslims that forced Chief Minister Nitish Kumar to go for a rethinking and named one Khalid Anwar in his list of three candidates for the Council election including himself. This person in his late thirties from Champaran is said be a close aide of Imarat head Maulana Wali Rahmani, the chief host of the conference.

Anwar filed his nomination papers along with Nitish on Monday. In the JD(U) circles as well as in politics he is an alien and had never been a member of any party. His name was announced on Sunday late evening raising many eyebrows. Anwar was very active in this conference and possibly his name was approved when he was anchoring the conference at Gandhi Maidan. He also owns an Urdu daily newspaper.

It was Sanjay Singh, JD(U) spokesman, who was completing his tenure in the Council and was believed to be renominated. But on Sunday morning he was intimated by the party that he was not being renominated due to some other considerations. Singh is the most active spokesman of the party issuing statements against RJD leaders Lalu Prasad and Tejashwi Prasad Yadav on daily basis.

Bihar JD(U) president Bashistha Narayan Singh had no satisfactory explanation for giving ticket to Anwar who was not even primary member of JD(U). Anwar claimed that he was associated with JD(U) for long but became its formal member only one a half month back. There was no reply when asked what qualities the party leadership saw in Anwar in only six weeks and decided to give him ticket. 

The talks are going on in the political circles that Nitish was trying to patch up with Rahmani and keep the clerics in good humour particularly at a time when Bihar experienced a series of communal violence during Ram Navami and the CM was widely accused by the minorities that he was unable to handle the situation due to pressure on him by his ally BJP.

Nitish had a stormy relation with Rahmani, who is also general secretary of All India Muslim Personal Law Board apart from being appointed Amir-e-Shariat of Imarat Shariah having its jurisdiction in Bihar, Jharkhand and Odisha. The two had a public spat at a function a few years back. Of late there had been efforts for the patch up between the two and Anwar was taking a lead role. Sometimes back he took the CM to the residence of Rahmani after his elevation as Imarat head. Rahmani had traditionally been associated with Congress and served as an MLC and deputy chairman of the Legislative Council in early 80s.

A somehow similar situation was prevailing in the BJP too which renominated Deputy CM Sushil Kumar Modi and Health Minister Mangal Pandey. Its third candidate was former junior Minister at Centre Sanjay Paswan. It is believed that Paswan, who had been sidelined in the party for a long period was given ticket in an unexpected move in the light of the dalit’s Bharat bandh and growing discomfort of the scheduled castes towards BJP led Government. The BJP has tried to placate the dalits by nominating Paswan.

Monday was the last day for filing of nomination papers and since only 11 candidates have filed their papers against 11 vacancies they would be declared elected unopposed.

Prem Chandra Mishra of Congress also filed his papers on Monday while from RJD Rabri Devi, Ram Chandra Purbe, Khurshid Mohsin and former CM Jitan Ram Manjhi’s son Santosh Manjhi of HAM filed their papers on Friday.



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