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JD-U meet blames Chirag, RCP Singh for undermining party

Source: PTI
August 09, 2022 23:11 IST
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Startling allegations of backstabbing were made against the Bharatiya Janata Party by MLAs and MPs of the Janata Dal-United on Tuesday at a meeting in Patna after which Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar pulled the plug on the alliance.

IMAGE: JD-U leader Nitish Kumar speaks during a meeting as RJD leaders Tejashwi Yadav and Tej Pratap Yadav look on, at former Bihar CM Rabri Devi's residence, Patna, August 9, 2022. Photograph: ANI Photo/ANI Pics Service

According to sources in the JD-U, who did not wish to be named, information, including call details, was shared which suggested that former national president RCP Singh, who resigned from the primary membership last week, had contacted ”about a dozen MLAs and a minister at the BJP's behest, with the intention to split the party”.

The JD-U lawmakers, who unanimously backed Kumar's decision to dump the BJP, were of the view that things went fine till the 2019 Lok Sabha polls which the two parties, along with late Union minister Ram Vilas Paswan's Lok Janshakti Party, had swept, winning all but one of the 40 seats in the state.

 

”However, the BJP changed its colours once the assembly polls of 2020 approached. It was clearly behind the rebellion of Chirag Paswan who openly spoke of dislodging Nitish Kumar and fielded his candidates, many of them so-called rebels of the BJP, in all seats the JD-U contested,” the sources said.

They also alleged that RCP Singh, who was then the national general secretary (organisation), had tried to ensure defeat of many JD-U candidates whom he did not like.

Paswan's brinkmanship, coupled with Singh's alleged role, indeed, proved costly to the JD-U a lot as its tally plunged to 43, from 71 in the 2015 assembly polls which the party had contested in alliance with the RJD and the Congress.

Singh went on to clinch a berth in the Union cabinet a few months after Kumar returned as chief minister for yet another term. His induction, however, did not have the approval of Kumar, the party's de facto leader, and he was denied another Rajya Sabha term which caused him to resign.

The JD-U leaders also complained of ”non-cooperation” by ministers belonging to the BJP, which had a lion's share in the cabinet owing to the saffron camp's superior numerical strength in the assembly.

The chief minister, on his part, is also said to have noted with dissatisfaction statements by ”prominent BJP leaders who kept undermining his leadership”.

Soon after Kumar made the move, Union minister Giriraj Singh, known to be a detractor since his days as a defiant member of the state cabinet, vented his spleen.

"It is no surprise that Nitish has chosen Muharram to betray us. What better occasion could he have for sacrifice (qurbaani) of his principles and promises," Singh told reporters.

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