Bharatiya Janata Party leader Sushil Modi and Rashtriya Janata Dal member Rabri Devi on Tuesday engaged in a war of words after the latter "jokingly" remarked that the former should just take away Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and form an alliance.
Modi reprimanded Devi saying that such statements are tantamount to raising fingers at the integrity and character of Kumar.
"The statements made by Rabri Devi are not against me; rather she has pointed a finger on Nitish's character. It is only for Nitish Kumar to retort. She cannot downplay the entire event by saying that it was a joking remark. It is for Nitish to retort since one of their core alliance partner and a former CM of Bihar has raised a finger on Nitish's character," Modi said.
He said that the statement reflected signs of rift within the JDU-RJD alliance and it was known that the coalition would not last longer.
"It is up to them to decide. We always knew that this alliance would not last long. Nitish Kumar must re-think its relations with Congress and RJD especially at a time when both have been against demonetisation," Modi said.
He, however, said that the BJP is open for an alliance with the Kumar led Janata Dal United, if the latter comes up with a proposal.
"If any proposal comes from the JDU then we will deliberate upon it because in politics there are no permanent enemies or friends. For the past 17 years he was with us, later he defected from the alliance," he said.
Responding to Modi's remark, Devi made a sarcastic retort saying "Modi ji (Sushil Kumar Modi) ki baaton pe vichaar Mukhyamantri ji (Nitish Kumar) hi karenge (The Chief Minister will definitely deliberate upon (Sushil) Modi's offer."
However, she later clarified that her statement was just a joke and she was not serious.
"Media wale bole Sushil Kumar Modi kahe hain Nitish Kumar RJD chhor BJP aajaye, hum bole Modi ji Nitish ko godi mein utha lejaaye. (Media persons were quoting Sushil Modi as saying that Nitish will soon join the BJP, I think he should take Nitish away)," she said.