Bharatiya Janata Party politician Giriraj Singh has claimed that he is unhappy and “hurt” by the treatment meted out to him by the party leadership after the sitting Member of Parliament from Bihar’s Nawada constituency was fielded from Begusarai Lok Sabha seat for the upcoming 2019 Lok Sabha elections.
The Union Minister of State for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises said the decision to field him from Begusarai was not taken in consultation with him and questioned the state leadership for not taking his requests into consideration.
“My self-respect is hurt that no other MP’s seat was changed in Bihar. It was decided without talking to me. The state BJP leadership should tell me why was it done. I have nothing against Begusarai but I can’t compromise my self-respect,” Giriraj said.
Giriraj said that state BJP president Nityanand Rai and fellow MP from Jamui constituency, Chirag Paswan, “assured” him a “seat of his choice”.
“I was hoping to contest from Begusarai in 1996 and 2014 but the party leadership said Bhola Singh wants to contest from Begusarai. I was fielded from Nawada (then),” he said, adding that he worked very hard for the welfare of the people of Nawada.
Former Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) student union leader Kanhaiya Kumar is set to contest from Begusarai against Giriraj.
Kanhaiya Kumar shot to notoriety after alleged anti-India protest that took place on the campus of JNU in 2016. Police had charged Kanhaiya alongwith Umar Khalid and Anirban Bhattacharya for allegedly shouting anti-India slogans during an event on the university’s campus on February 9, 2016, to commemorate the hanging of Parliament-attack mastermind Afzal Guru. Since then Kanhaiya and his batchmates were caught up in the controversy, the term “Tukde Tukde Gang” was coined for them by social media activists.
Both Giriraj and Kanhaiya belong to the Bhumihar caste which dominates Begusarai.
Rashtriya Janata Dal candidate from Begusarai Tanweer Hasan dismissed the contest from Kanhaiya claiming that the real fight was between him and BJP’s Giriraj.
The general elections will be held in seven phases from April 11 to May 19 for 543 Lok Sabha seats across the country. Counting will be done on May 23.