1 lakh DNA samples from Bihar await signal from PM Office

1 lakh DNA samples from Bihar await signal from PM Office

NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s DNA attack on Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar has given his mail man a headache. There’s a “spike” in post from Bihar in the past week — all letters with DNA samples.

The Nirman Bhavan Post Office, which handles all post addressed to the PMO, has received 117 big mail bags with about 1,000 letters each. These mail bags with over 1 lakh samples — largely hair strands and nail clippings — are now PMO property, which has not given any directions to the Department of Posts on what to do with more such letters that are expected to stream in.

Chief Post Master General, Delhi Circle, Vasu Mitra, told ET there might be some increase in mail from Bihar of late, but no special arrangements were needed for that.

“The prime minister gets lots of letters and we already have special arrangements in place for that. The Nirman Bhawan post office makes 2-3 deliveries of bags full of communication for the PM daily. There may be a 10-20 per cent rise in mail from Bihar as part of some drive,” said Mitra.

ET’s queries to the Prime Minister’s Office were not answered.

Chief minister had promised 50 lakh letters with DNA samples of Bihari people after PM Modi on July 25, in his first pre-poll rally at Muzaffarpur in Bihar, attacked Kumar for changing political allegiances, alleging there might be “some problem with Nitish Kumar’s DNA”. Kumar latched on to it and turned it into an assault on ‘Bihari asmita (pride)’. He also highlighted roads & transport minister Nitin Gadkari’s alleged remark that “jaativaad (casteism) Bihar ke DNA me hai”.

Kumar announced a campaign to send DNA samples of Bihari people to the prime minister asking for ‘shabd wapsi (take back your words)’. Since then, the entire Nitish campaign has been centred on ‘Bihari asmita’, a throwback to Modi’s ‘Gujarati asmita’ campaign.

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