Agnipath protests trigger fresh friction between allies BJP and JD (U)

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The protests against Center’s Agnipath scheme that envisages recruitment of soldiers on a short-term contractual basis, triggered a fresh war of words between and JD(U), with the former holding the alliance government responsible for its inability to stop attacks on the homes of leaders.

Talking to reporters here on Saturday, Bihar’s chief, Sanjay Jaiswal, whose home was vandalised by ‘Agnipath’ protesters, criticised the state government over what he called inadequate efforts to stop violent protests in the state.

He held Nitish Kumar-led coalition government responsible for what he termed as targeted attacks on BJP leaders in the state.

“When protestors attacked my house in Bettiah district on Friday, we called the fire brigade..they said fire tenders would come only if the local administration allows it,” a visibly upset Jaiswal told reporters. Bihar Deputy Chief Minister Renu Devi’s home and several BJP offices were also vandalised by the protesters on Friday.

The state BJP chief said targeting people at the behest of the administration and torching offices of a particular party with police as mute spectators are unacceptable.

“We are part of the state government alliance, but something like this has not happened anywhere in the country, it is happening only in Bihar. As a leader of the BJP, I condemn this incident and if this is not stopped, it won’t be good for anyone,” he said.

Reacting to Jaiswal’s comment, JD(U)’s chief Rajiv Ranjan alias Lalan Singh, said, The central government took a decision. There are protests in other states too. Young people are concerned about their future, so they came out to protest. Of course violence is not the way. We can’t accept violence. But the BJP should also listen to what is worrying these young people, their concerns. Instead, the BJP is blaming the administration,” Ranjan said in a video statement.

“What has the administration got to do with all this? A frustrated BJP is blaming the administration over its inability to contain the anger of the protesters. Protests against this scheme are taking place in several BJP ruled states also. Why is Jaiswal not talking about the inaction of security forces in BJP ruled states ?” asked Singh.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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