New Delhi: A day after he skipped a luncheon meeting of opposition parties, Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Saturday met Prime Minister Narendra Modi amid the buzz about growing bonhomie between the two.
The Janata Dal(United) president was, however, dismissive of any such suggestion and told reporters after the meeting that "too much was being read into" the meeting which, he insisted, was a usual interaction between the prime minister and a chief minister.
"I did not meet him in the capacity of the JD(U) chief but as the state chief minister. It was not a political meeting. Why is the media reading too much into it?" he said. He also did not take questions from journalists about allegations of corruption against his ally -- Rashtriya Janata Dal chief Lalu Prasad -- and his family members. There are allegations and counter allegations, he said, claiming that he responded only to "facts."
Kumar also said that he had met Congress chief Sonia Gandhi last month and it was already decided that former JD(U) chief Sharad Yadav will attend the lunch hosted by her.
Modi had invited Kumar for a lunch he hosted for the visiting Mauritius Prime Minister Pravind Jugnauth. "Bihar has an emotional connect with Mauritius as half of the population there is of Bihari origin. PM had invited me for the luncheon as the state CM and I decided to accept it," he said.
The chief minister said he also impressed upon the prime minister the need for desilting the Ganga in Bihar and requested him to send a team of experts to the state before June 10. The rise in the level of riverbed causes flood in vast areas during monsoon, while large parts of it become dry during summer as it cannot hold much water.