Election-strategist Prashant Kishor attacked Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar this morning for launching poll campaign in the state where assembly elections are due later this year amid the country's battle against coronavirus. Last week, Mr Kumar's Janata Dal United and its ally, the BJP, went into election mode in the state, where polls are due in October-November. Amit Shah had held a virtual rally while Mr Kumar held a series of interactions with his party's district chiefs.
"Despite the lowest testing rate, 7-9 per cent positive case rate and more than 6,000 cases, Bihar is discussing elections instead of coronavirus. Nitish Kumar, who had confined himself to his home amid coronavirus fears, thinks people won't be exposed (to COVID-19) if they step out of their homes to participate in the elections," Prashant Kishor tweeted in Hindi.
This morning's attack by Mr Kishor is the latest in a series of tweets he posted against Bihar's response to coronavirus. The 43-year-old election strategist was a top aide of Nitish Kumar during his brief stint in Janata Dal United before he was sacked in January.
Mr Kumar, 69, has probably been one of the few chief ministers in the country who did not hold a video conference for the journalists or the people of his state on the pandemic after India announced one of the world's strictest lockdowns to check the spread of the highly infectious illness in March.
Mr Kumar has also drawn political attacks because he never stepped out of his government bungalow on 1, Anne Marg in Patna since March 16.
He made his first public appearances on Tuesday, as he stepped out to attend a cabinet meeting after 84 days of social distancing. However, he had been holding virtual meetings with his party workers.
While the number of coronavirus cases in the state touched the 6,000-mark, Nitish Kumar on Thursday disclosed that in the upcoming state polls, his main promise to voters will be irrigation facilities to all the agricultural land in the state.
Mr Kishor has also been attacking the Centre over its tackling of the pandemic.
"#COVID can't be wished away. We must fight or it will keep getting worse. Globally, leaders have won this fight with HUMILITY, TRANSPARENCY, SCIENCE & widespread PUBLIC BUY-IN. Time we learn from others and show the courage to go back to the DRAWING BOARD before it's too late. (sic)," Mr Kishor tweeted on Friday.