3:50 pm - Sunday February 17, 1839

We will battle communal forces, says Nitish

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We will battle communal forces, says Nitish
We will battle communal forces, says Nitish

New Delhi – Under attack from the BJP and its prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi, Bihar Chief Minister Wednesday urged secular parties to close ranks to battle “communal forces”.

Speaking here at a Left-sponsored convention called with the 2014 Lok Sabha election in mind, Nitish Kumar said there was an attempt across the country to create communal tensions.

“There is a clear attempt to disturb communal amity,” he said, adding that he would never let that happen.

Nitish Kumar said while religious activities cannot and should not be banned, “there is a time for everything. Now a days religious processions are being taken out all the time”.

In an obvious reference to groups like the Vishwa Hindu Parishad, the chief minister said some outfits used such occasions to parade tableaux with themes that caused hurt to some communities.

“We have to oppose all this. There are efforts to polarize the society, there are efforts to create conflicts.

“Some people are uncomfortable with our Ganga-Jamuna tehzib… They feel that if there are riots, if there is bloodshed, they will reap the benefits.”

Without naming the Bharatiya Janata Party or his own Janata Dal-United, Nitish Kumar justified the end of their 17-year-long alliance in June.

“We took some decisions based on principles… We had decided that we will face the situation whatever the consequence,” he said. “We kept in mind our (secular) principles.”

Nitish Kumar also called for increasing the representation of minority communities in secular forces.

On Sunday, Gujarat Chief Minister Modi launched a blistering attack on Nitish Kumar at a rally in Patna that was marred by bomb blasts that led to the death of six people in the city.

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