Nitish Kumar leads massive human chains across Bihar to raise awareness on his govt's efforts; waste of money, says Opposition

  • Millions of people came out on the streets in Bihar on Sunday to form human chains across the state in support of the Nitish Kumar government's environment conservation and social reform measures

  • Kumar organised the event to raise awareness about efforts such as the 'Jal- Jeevan-Hariyali' drive, campaigns against dowry and child marriage and ban on sale and consumption of alcohol.

  • Opposition parties like the RJD, however, came out with stinging criticism of the event, dubbing it as a colossal wastage of public money and government resources

Patna: Millions of people came out on the streets in Bihar on Sunday to form human chains across the state in support of the Nitish Kumar government's environment conservation and social reform measures.

The chief minister, flanked by his deputy Sushil Kumar Modi and other dignitaries, stood holding hands at the Gandhi Maidan in the state capital, where the participants formed a pattern resembling the map of Bihar.

Kumar, whose third consecutive tenure as the chief minister would end in less than a year, organised the event to raise awareness about efforts such as the 'Jal- Jeevan-Hariyali' drive, campaigns against dowry and child marriage and ban on sale and consumption of alcohol. Speaking after the function - as part of which patriotic songs were played by musical bands - Kumar thanked the people of the state for making the event a success and said, "I hope the number of people who have participated exceeds what we had intended to achieve."

Official sources said efforts were made to include 40 million people, "more than the population of countries like Canada and Australia", in the drive and an exact figure would be available by evening. This is the third human chain organised at the instance of Kumar, the first being in 2017 followed by another a year later.

Opposition parties like the RJD, however, came out with stinging criticism of the event, dubbing it as a colossal wastage of public money and government resources.

RJD supremo Lalu Prasad's elder son Tej Pratap Yadav told reporters, "We would have appreciated, had the chief minister organized a rozgar shrinkhla - for providing jobs to unemployed youth - instead of the farcical manav shrinkhla (human chain)."

The party's national vice president Shivanand Tiwary said the event was a flop show and shared a number of pictures on social media in which the chain could be seen broken at a number of places and children aged no more than 10 years made to stand in the cold weather, despite official claims that only those of Class VI and above would be taking part.

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Updated Date: Jan 19, 2020 16:55:28 IST