While the Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar on Wednesday categorically stated that nobody can turn out anyone from the country his Uttar Pradesh counterpart Yogi Adityanath called for immediate expulsion of all the ‘infiltrators’. The two leaders were seeking votes for Janata Dal (United) and BJP candidates in Kishanganj and Katihar Assembly constituencies respectively.
Nitish said that he had always stood for harmony in the society and came down heavily on those spreading rumours about the outsiders living in the country. He was all praise for the sitting Kishanganj MLA of his party, Mujahid Alam, who, according to the CM helped him identify the land for the off-campus centre of the Aligarh Muslim University.
In contrast Yogi, perhaps deliberately, chose to raise the issue of ‘Bangladeshi infiltrations’ as the NDA is facing a stiff challenge in the Seemanchal belt as well. While backing the measures taken by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the issue of infiltration, Yogi said that no compromise could be made on the security of the country.
As the Seemanchal belt has a sizeable Muslim population, many of them Bangla speaking, the BJP and RSS have for the last many years been engaged in the campaign to what they call expulsion of the infiltrators. About a decade back the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad launched an agitation demanding the expulsion of what they called Bangladeshi infiltrators.
The ABVP activists were even lathicharged in Patna. Later many of their leaders criticised the deputy CM Sushil Kumar Modi for not coming to their rescue though he had the Sangh background. During the last year’s CAA-cum-NRC issue the Janata Dal (United) had to do a lot of tight rope walking. Many analysts are of the view that Nitish Kumar is being targeted by both sides.