Rashtriya Janata Dal’s Members of Legislative Assembly in Bihar on Tuesday demanded that Chief Minister Nitish Kumar sack two ministers in his cabinet, who had allegedly termed them as ‘Pakistani agents’.
Health Minister Ashwani Kumar Choubey and Animal Husbandry Minister Griraj Singh -- both senior leaders of the Bharatiya Janata Party -- had allegedly called some RJD MLAs ‘Pakistani agents’ after they opposed the state government’s move to make surya namaskar compulsory in all government schools in Bihar.
"The two ministers have violated the Constitution and oath of office by terming RJD MLAs as Pakistani agents. Their language exposes their mindset," Leader of Opposition Abdul Bari Siddiqui told rediff.com.
After RJD MLAs protested the state government’s decision to make surya namaskar compulsory, Choubey told media personnel that those opposing the idea are 'anti-nationals'.
"Any one opposing surya namaskar is an anti-national," he said
Reacting to the RJD’s demand, Choubey said that “no power on earth can sack him” from the cabinet.
On Tuesday, RJD MLAs staged a protest outside the state assembly and threatened to disrupt its proceedings unless the two ministers were sacked for their “abusive language”.
According to them, the two BJP ministers and the party’s other legislators allegedly shouted at RJD legislator Akhtarul Iman when he raised the issue on Monday.
Iman claimed that the state government had decided to make surya namaskar compulsory under pressure from the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh.
The stand-off between legislators of the BJP and RJD led to chaos in the assembly.
On February 9, the state government had issued a circular to all district education officers to ask school principals in their locality to ensure attendance of all students – from class 4 to class 7 -- for surya namaskar at functions organised by the Swami Vivekamand Shard Shati Samaroh Samiti at the district headquarters.
After objections from various Muslim organisations, the state government amended the circular, saying it was optional for school students to take part in the surya namaskar.