JD(U) will push for special status, package for Bihar: Nitish's close aide

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New Delhi, Jul 11 (PTI) Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar's key aide Manish Kumar Verma, who was given a key organisational position on Thursday within two days of joining the JD(U), said his party will strongly push for the fulfilment of its demand that the Centre grant special status or a special package to the state.

Citing the JD(U)'s good show in the Lok Sabha polls, he said the party believes the next assembly polls should be held under Kumar's leadership and added that there has been no other view on the issue so far.

He, though, told PTI that the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) will take a call on the matter near the polls, which are scheduled for next year end.

The NDA includes the BJP and Union Minister Chirag Paswan-led LJP and some other smaller parties in Bihar apart from the Janata Dal (United).

Amid swirling speculation that JD(U) president Kumar may groom the former IAS officer, who is a Kurmi like the chief minister and hails from his native district Nalanda, as a key face of the party, Verma recalled his long association with him and said he will carry out whatever responsibility is assigned to him.

An Odisha cadre officer, he served under Kumar for nine years on deputation and later quit the IAS as the chief minister inducted him as a member of some key government bodies. PTI KR KR ANB ANB