Bihar elections: Promise of free Covid vaccine in Bihar triggers war of words;Opposition questions, BJP responds

Bihar elections: BJP’s poll manifesto comes a day before Prime Minister Narendra Modi hits the campaign trail. Promise of free Coronavirus vaccine triggered big political spat with Opposition targeting the saffron party for exploiting Covid-19 for political benefits.

Avatar Written by October 22, 2020 16:49
Sitharaman, Tejashwi, Omar

New Delhi: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) released its manifesto on Thursday for Bihar elections and promised free Coronavirus vaccine for every person in the state and also generation of 19 lakh jobs over next 5 years.

“In the fight against coronavirus, the NDA government has set an example in the country. As soon as COVID-19 vaccine will be available for production at a mass scale every person in Bihar will get free vaccination. This is the first promise mentioned in our poll manifesto,” Sitharaman said.

The manifesto comes a day before Prime Minister Narendra Modi hits the campaign trail. The BJP’s manifesto speaks about the Prime Minister’s vision of making ‘Atmanirbhar Bihar’.

However, the poll promise of free Coronavirus vaccine didn’t go down well with the Opposition. Listing of Covid-19 and its vaccine in poll manifesto drew sharp criticism from RJD, Congress and Shiv Sena also, as they slammed the BJP for exploiting a deadly disease for political gains.

BJP selling fear of disease and death, says RJD

RJD accused the saffron party of politicising Coronavirus disease for political gains and said that it wants to reap benefits by selling ‘fear of death.’

“Corona ka teeka desk ka hai, BJP ka nahi! Teeka ka rajnitik istemaal dikhata hai ki inke paas bimaari aur maut ka bhaye bechane ke alawa koie vikalp nahi hai. Bihari swabhimaani hain, chand paison mein apne baccho ka bhavishya nahi bechate,” RJD tweeted in Hindi.

RJD’s CM face Tejashwi Yadav also questioned the Finance Minister for ‘step-motherly treatment’ to Bihar.

RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav said, “BJP doesn’t have a face for Bihar polls. Finance Minister had to come to release the vision document. Since she’s here, Sitharaman Ji should first tell why she never gave a special package and special state status to Bihar.”

Omar slams BJP’s blatant populism of exploiting Covid fears

National Conference leader Omar Abdullah took to Twitter to launch scathing attack on BJP’s poll promise of free Covid-19 vaccine in Bihar.
He called it BJP’s blatant populism and accused it of “shamefully exploiting coronavirus fears”.

“Will BJP be paying for these vaccines from the party treasury? If it’s coming from the government treasury then how can Bihar get free vaccines while the rest of the country has to pay? There is so much wrong with this blatant populism that shamefully exploits Covid fears,” Omar Abdulah tweeted.

Shiv Sena and Congress hit out at ‘poll jumla’

Shiv Sena spokesperson Priyanka Chaturvedi said that vaccine candidates for the pandemic are still in trial stages but it has already become an election jumla.

“Tum mujhe vote do, main tumhe vaccine [You give me votes, I will give you vaccine]…. what appalling cynicism! Will the ElectionCommission rap her & her shameless Govt on the knuckles?” Congress MP Shashi Tharoor tweeted.

BJP IT-cell incharge rebuts all charges, sets records straight

Amit Malviya, the BJP IT-cell in-charge took to Twitter to put an end to ‘baseless claims’ over free Coronavirus vaccine and set records straight by putting facts in perspective.

“BJP’s manifesto promises free Covid vaccine. Like all programs, center will provide vaccines to states at a nominal rate. It is for the state Govts to decide if they want to give it free or otherwise. Health being a state subject, Bihar BJP has decided to give it free. Simple,” Amit Malviya tweeted.