Patna: Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader and MP Tariq Anwar, at a press conference in Patna on Wednesday, asked Chief Minister Nitish Kumar to clarify his stand on special economic status for Bihar saying now that he was once again part of the Bharatiya Janata Party-led NDA, it made no sense in him not putting pressure on the Central government.

"Nitish Kumar should come clean on his stand on special status. Since he became the Chief Minister of Bihar in 2005, he had told the public that he would continue to build pressure on the Central government to accord special status to Bihar. However, now it appears that he has given up on his demand in spite of the fact that he is once again part of BJP-led NDA that is in power at the Center," the NCP spokesperson said.

Anwar said that all non-BJP parties in Bihar were united in their demand for special status and were willing to support Kumar if he takes up the issue with the Center.

Accusing Prime Minister Narendra Modi of cheating Biharis, the former Union Minister further said that Modi, during his campaign speeches in 2014 had promised to accord special status to Bihar but once he came into power, he forgot all about it and start playing games with the future of the state.

"Both Nitish Kumar and the BJP leadership should clarify their stand on special status so there is no confusion where the government stands on this issue," Anwar said.

Tariq Anwar also downplayed the recent Jinnah controversy saying the Indian Muslims had nothing to do with the founder of Pakistan and the whole brouhaha was ginned up by the Sangh Parivar ahead of the Karnataka state elections to galvanize Hindu votes.

"Indian Muslims do not care about Jinnah as they identify themselves with Mahatma Gandhi and Maulana Abdul Kalam Azad. The BJP is making it an issue to hide its four years of abject failure on all fronts and to take advantage of a polarized voting mass," he said.

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