Claiming that a specific alert was issued to Bihar government about Narendra Modi's rally in Patna, BJP today accused the Nitish Kumar government of lapses that led to serial blasts and charged it was soft on terror due to vote-bank politics.
The opposition party accused the state government of adopting a "casual and callous" attitude and demanded a high-level probe and a review of security of its Prime Ministerial candidate.
Leader of the Opposition in Rajya Sabha Arun Jaitley said at a press conference here that government needs to rethink on the security drill to be carried out for political rallies ahead of next general elections and redefine its policy.
"This is an attack of Narendra Modi and other senior BJP leaders. It was intended to intimidate our party which has vowed with greater determination to fight these tendencies. The Ministry of Home Affairs and government of India should seriously review the security of Narendra Modi," he said.
Jaitley, who was present at the Patna rally, attacked the Nitish government, saying "the attitude of Bihar government was casual and callous...In this environment, are we going to be soft on security because some state governments want to be seen as soft on terror for obvious reasons"? Charging the state with "monumental failure", he said "this attack coming in this backdrop clearly establishes the extent of radicalisation which took place in the state." Refuting claims of Bihar government that there were no alerts issued by the Centre about the rally, he said "this does not appear to be factually correct...A specific alert was sent to the Bihar police by the central Intelligence Bureau on October 23, 2013 with regard to the rally to be addressed by Shri Narendra Modi in Patna."
"This alert was specific enough to mention that the IM modules could organize strikes during Narendra Modi’s Patna visit. A reference to the arrest of Bhatkal, an information emanating from another source was also mentioned." The BJP leader said India cannot afford to be either soft on terror or soft on security. "A policy against terror and the need for the security cannot be relatable to the policy of vote bank politics of a given government," he said.
BJP President Rajnath Singh said there was a "security lapse" at Modi's rally and extra precautions should have been taken.
The party plans to make the rally blasts issue a political one and will be holding conferences to highlight the incident in several state capitals tomorrow.