Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Friday criticised former union minister RCP Singh who recently quit Janata Dal (United) and said he "messed up" a lot though the party gave him responsible positions.
"Unhone Bahaut gadbad kiya (he messed up a lot). Who knew him before? I catapulted him to new heights. I gave him my place as party chief in 2020. Important responsibilities were given. We gave him a lot of respect. When he became a minister at the Centre, we asked him to quit the party chief post and gave it to Lalan ji. He has hurt the sentiments of people in the party by his statements," Mr Kumar told to reporters.
RCP Singh last week announced his exit from JD-U and suggested he would form his own party at a press conference in Mustafapur in Bihar's Muzaffarpur.
JD (U) had issued a show-cause notice to RCP Singh over him and his family "amassing vast immovable property from 2013 to 2022" and "many discrepancies" having come to light.
Nitish Kumar said Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) did not give due representation to Bihar in the union cabinet.
Mr Kumar, who resigned as Chief Minister leaving the BJP-led NDA earlier this week and again forged ties with RJD, said that he conveyed that there should be four ministers from JD-U in the central government but that demand was not met.
"How many people from Bihar did they (BJP) make a Minister at Centre? I told them to make our people ministers too. I asked for four ministers from our party. They did not give," Mr Kumar said.
Asked about the reason for breaking the alliance with BJP, Nitish Kumar took potshots at the party's former ally.
"We had discussions in our party, it was people's wish. Even during polls, winning candidates said nobody from BJP supported them and losing candidates said they were defeated by BJP people. I had to keep my party safe and act as per people's wish," Mr Kumar said.
Mr Kumar defended Deputy Chief Minister Tejashwi Yadav being provided with Z security.
"Why Tejashwi Yadav should not get the Z security? He is the Deputy CM."
The Chief Minister said that cabinet expansion of the newly-formed Mahagathbandhan government in Bihar will probably happen after August 15.
Nitish Kumar was sworn in as chief minister for a record eighth time on Wednesday after he resigned from the post a day earlier and quit the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA). RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav took an oath as deputy chief minister.
The Nitish Kumar-led Mahagathbandhan government in Bihar will go for a floor test on August 24 to prove its majority in the state assembly.
The decision to hold the floor test on August 24 and make a suitable recommendation for convening the state assembly was taken at a cabinet meeting attended by Kumar and Yadav on Wednesday. Sources said that expansion of the cabinet is likely to take place on August 16 and RJD will have more ministers than the Janata Dal-United.
Mahagathbandhan or Grand Alliance has the support of 164 members in the assembly.
Nitish Kumar broke his alliance with the BJP for the second time in eight years on Tuesday before joining hands with RJD and other parties in the Mahagathbandhan including the Congress and Left parties. The Grand Alliance also has the support of Hindustan Awam Morcha (HAM), which has four MLAs in the Assembly.
BJP has accused Nitish Kumar of "disrespecting" the mandate given by the people of Bihar. BJP and JD-U had fought the assembly polls together in 2020. Nitish Kumar was made Chief Minister though the BJP won more seats.
Sources said that Congress is likely to have 2-3 representatives in the cabinet and HAM may get one berth.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)