- Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar declared a 10-day lockdown over Covid
- Bihar BJP Chief said he had called for lockdown when cases were much less
- JDU claims the post was meant to hide of BJP which has health portfolio
Two days after Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar declared a 10-day lockdown over Covid, but a leader of his ally BJP has put out an "I-Told-You-So" post on Facebook.
In the post that has enraged Nitish Kumar's Janata Dal United, Bihar BJP Chief Sanjay Jaiswal implies that the Bihar government ignored his advice to impose a lockdown when Covid cases in the state were less than 40,000. With over one lakh active cases now, he writes, there is no other option.
"Bihar government has imposed 11 days lockdown from today. Please follow this and save your and your family's life," says Mr Jaiswal's Facebook post.
"Governments have to take some difficult decisions for the interest of the citizens. Even today, there is lockdown in different states of half the countries of the world. In the meeting of Governor, when I talked about the 62-hour lockdown from Friday evening to Monday morning, the cases in Bihar were less than 40,000 but today due to more than one lakh active cases, Bihar government there is no other option for public welfare. All the representatives of the Bharatiya Janata Party are requested to stay in their area and worry about hospitals. Wake the public up to mask and 2 yards distance. I hope even the leaders who make political rhetoric by taking my name understand the ground reality," the Lok Sabha MP writes in the long post.
This is his second post within a week and Nitish Kumar's party is seething. Janata Dal United leaders point out that the BJP has the health portfolio in the coalition government and allege Mr Jaiswal's posts are meant to divert attention from the failure of the party's minister.
"Mr Jaiswal should come clean on how many ventilators he organised or whether he intervened to ensure oxygen allotments and other health needs for Bihar on the preferential basis from the central government," a JDU leader said.
Nitish Kumar announced on Tuesday that Bihar would go into lockdown till May 15. The announcement hours after the Patna High Court ordered the government to declare a lockdown, warning that otherwise, the court may step in.
Yesterday, the Chief Minister urged people to postpone weddings and other social functions, with the state reporting over 10,000 daily cases for several days.
In a previous Facebook post on May 1, Mr Jaiswal, who is a doctor, had made an alarming reference to a "close friend in Patna who is a doctor and not picking up calls" because he was helpless in a growing health crisis.
"The situation reached at the stage that even my close friend in Patna who is a doctor is not picking up my calls as he is unable to help. I have lost many known persons in the second wave," the BJP leader said in the Facebook post in Hindi.
His repeated posts have not helped ease the strained ties between Nitish Kumar and the BJP in their second straight term in power. The dynamics shifted this time round with Mr Kumar's party ending up with fewer seats and becoming the junior partner in the coalition.
India today reported another global record of 4.12 lakh cases and 3,980 deaths in a day.