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Nitish wants Tejashwi to rebut charges, says alliance won't break (Lead)

Patna, July 11 (IANS) Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Tuesday asked the RJD and Deputy Chief Minister Tejashwi Yadav to give a “fact-wise reply in public” to the corruption charges hurled at him but said the ruling Grand Alliance won’t break.

“So far, the reply or explanation given by them is not satisfactory. They should come out with fact-wise reply in public,” the Janata Dal-United (JD-U) leader told his party leaders, breaking his silence on the younger son of RJD chief Lalu Prasad.

Nitish Kumar’s comments follow a corruption case filed by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).

“I shall not compromise with my principles. I am firm on my resolve of zero tolerance against corruption,” Nitish Kumar reportedly said at his official residence here.

His statement came after a series of raids on the Deputy Chief Minister and other members of Lalu Prasad’s family.

“I will not tolerate corruption,” Nitish Kumar was quoted as saying by a senior party leader.

Without naming Lalu Prasad and Tejashwi Yadav, Nitish Kumar said a “fact-wise reply” should be given in public by those against whom allegations of corruption had surfaced.

He said whenever there were allegations of corruption against any JD-U leader, his party had taken necessary action.

“RJD will have to take action against its leader. It is for RJD to act against Tejashwi as he has been named in a FIR by the CBI.”

But the Chief Minister said he and his party won’t break the ruling Grand Alliance.

“Hum gathbandhan todenge nahi… akhri dum tak isse bachane ki koshish karenge. (We will not break the Grand Alliance… We will try to save it till the end).”

The Grand Alliance comprises the JD-U, RJD and the Congress.

JD-U spokesperson Neeraj Kumar said his party wanted those facing allegations of corruption to come out with facts in the public domain. “JD-U will not compromise on corruption and crime.”

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has repeatedly asked Nitish Kumar to sack Tejashwi Yadav and end the alliance with the RJD.

A day after the RJD announced that Tejashwi Yadav would not resign and dubbed the CBI action against him a “political conspiracy” to destabilise the Grand Alliance, speculation was rife that Nitish Kumar and his party could demand the former’s resignation.

Lalu Prasad’s elder son Tej Pratap Yadav is the Health Minister in the Bihar government.

On Friday, the CBI conducted raids across four cities in connection with a corruption case in which Lalu Prasad’s wife Rabri Devi and son Tejashwi Yadav are among the accused.

The case relates to alleged manipulation in award of contract for maintenance of two hotels run by railway subsidiary IRCTC when the RJD chief was the Railway Minister in the United Progressive Alliance government.

Post Source: Ians feed

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