On Wednesday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi strongly criticized Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, though not by name, for his comments regarding the role of women’s education in population control. During a campaign rally in Madhya Pradesh’s Guna, the PM made reference to “a prominent leader of the INDIA alliance (the 28-member opposition bloc)” who had used “indecent language shamelessly within the Assembly.”
The PM went on to say, “A prominent leader of the INDIA alliance used indecent language within the Assembly shamelessly. Not a single leader from the INDIA alliance is condemning it. How much lower will they go and tarnish the country’s reputation?”
He further added that “For those who watched TV yesterday, this arrogant alliance… this one of the prominent leader of the INDIA alliance used disgraceful language within the Assembly for women, in the presence of respected mothers and sisters, without any sense of shame. Can such individuals work for you? Should you hold them in respect?” the PM questioned.
Throughout the day, numerous BJP leaders, who were once allies of Nitish Kumar, criticized him for his “vulgar” comments regarding the role of women’s education in population control. The news agency ANI shared visuals of a crowd outside Delhi’s Bihar Bhawan with placards and effigies of the Chief Minister.
The BJP has also called on the people of Bihar to remember the Chief Minister’s remarks when voting in the 2024 Lok Sabha election. The state has a significant 40 seats, most of which were divided between the BJP and Nitish Kumar’s Janata Dal (United), which parted ways with the alliance last year.
Ahead of elections in five states this month and next year’s general election, the BJP is keen to exploit Nitish Kumar’s inappropriate words. They have rejected his apology and demanded his resignation, much like the Prime Minister. They have also criticized INDIA leaders, including former Congress leader Sonia Gandhi.
Union Minister Nityanand Rai, who is a Lok Sabha MP from Bihar’s Ujiarpur, accused Nitish Kumar of losing his “mental stability” and also criticized his deputy, Tejashwi Yadav, for defending the statement.
Aparna Yadav, a member of the BJP and the daughter-in-law of the late Mulayam Singh Yadav, the patriarch of the Samajwadi Party, also criticized Nitish Kumar, saying, “First and foremost, as a woman, I am furious. I don’t believe he should have made such a statement. This kind of remark brings shame to the country…”