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News updated at 1:55 PM IST

Nitish meets PM for spl status

New Delhi, Mar 18, 2013, DHNS: 1:41 IST
Nitish Kumar File photo

Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Monday met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Finance Minister P Chidambaram to demand special category status for his state and expressed confidence that the UPA government will meet the demand.

“Whatever they have said indicates they will take up the matter. I can not say anything on how they do it, whether they form an expert committee or they do it on their own,” the beaming Chief Minister told reporters after his meeting with the prime minister in the Parliament House.

He also met Planning Commission Deputy Chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia earlier on Monday. Kumar’s meeting with the PM and the FM comes after his Adhikar Rally in Ramleela Maidan that indicated some kind of political understanding between the JDU and the Congress over the issue. The move may have its own consequences in the national politics as it may become the basis for coming together of both the parties against BJP under the
leadership of Narendra Modi.

“There is no need to set a time frame. It is automatically fixed. They (the government) don’t have time to fulfil all the demand as 2014 elections are round the corner. If they do it, it would benefit them in 2014,” said the JDU leader.

“The finance minister had expressed the need to revisit the criteria for granting special status to the underdeveloped states in his budget speech. We have demanded its implementation,” he added further.

He said that the Centre should help states like Bihar to achieve national average on development indicators including per capita income, health and education.

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