Patna: Amid the ongoing political uncertainty in Maharashtra over government formation, allies of Bihar’s opposition Grand Alliance have said that they have no objection with Congress supporting or backing Shiv Sena against the BJP. They are also in favour of formation of a Shiv Sena, Nationalist Congress Party and Congress led new government in Maharashtra.
Grand Alliance leaders share the view, “Time has changed and we have to be practical to challenge BJP and help Shiv Sena, an old ally of BJP, that has ended its alliance with the party.”
Congress is a major ally of the Grand Alliance of Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD), Rashtriya Lok Samta Party (RLSP), Hindustani Awam Morcha (HAM) and Vikassheel Insaan Party (VIP) in Bihar. RJD and Congress are known for their opposition to BJP and its ally Shiv Sena for following a similar ideological agenda of Hindutva politics.
RJD state president Ram Chander Purve said, “From the way Shiv Sena parted ways with the BJP, one thing is clear that BJP is challenged by its old ally. Congress strategy in Maharashtra is different from Bihar. In Bihar, Congress is with RJD and our alliance is intact and strong. RJD has nothing to say about Congress’s likely relation with Shiv Sena and the party has no objection if Congress decides to go with it in Maharashtra for government formation.”
Besides, RJD leaders said that there was a time when big and small parties used to joined hands to stand against then powerful Congress, similarly a situation will emerge in the country against the BJP. Shiv Sena has demonstrated an example and its MLAs refused to switch loyalty to BJP for money. Sena may even change its hardline politics after ending the alliance with BJP.
Also read: Maha Govt Formation: 72 Hours for BJP, 24 for Others?
Former Union Minister and RLSP president Upender Kushwaha said Congress is free to join hands with Shiv Sena for government formation. HAM state president B L Vaishyantri said Congress and NCP have rightly decided to support Shiv Sena. It will pave way for others to follow to get rid of growing ego of BJP.
Grand Alliance leaders have also pointed that BJP’s big brotherly attitude has forced its another ally All Jharkhand Students’ Union Party (AJSU) in Jharkhand to announce party candidates for upcoming state Assembly polls in the same seats as BJP, a possible signal that it will go to elections alone.
Kushwaha further added, “The Grand Alliance, joined by Left parties is staging a statewide dharna against the NDA government at the Centre and state on November 13. This is the beginning of an opposition alliance of the 2020 Bihar Assembly polls.”
Kushwaha’s comment can be taken as a likely hint of an alliance of Left parties including Communist Party of India (CPI), Communist Party of India (Marxist) [CPI(M)] and Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist) [CPI(ML)] with the Grand Alliance for the next Assembly polls in the state. Congress and RLSP have expressed their support for it. None other than RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav said that the party has no hesitation to work with Kanhaiya Kumar, former JNUSU president and a popular CPI face.
Last month, in a major setback to the ruling National Democratic Alliance (NDA), the opposition Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) won two seats and the All India Majlis e Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) won one seat for the first time in Assembly by-elections. The ruling Janata Dal-United was defeated in three seats it contested, while managing to win only one seat with narrow margin. The only silver lining for NDA was that Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) ally Lok Janshakti Party (LJP) retained the Samastipur constituency in the by-elections.
The by-election results are being seen as a mini-referendum for the Nitish Kumar-led BJP-Janata Dal (United) government ahead of the Assembly polls next year.
Also read: Bypolls Deal Big Blow to Ruling NDA in Bihar
Under the leadership of Tejashwi Yadav, the former deputy chief minister and younger son of party supremo Lalu Prasad, the RJD has proved that it has an edge over JD-U in the state, despite it having failed to make a mark in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls as part of the Grand Alliance. “RJD’s traditional support base among backward castes, Muslims and dalits is still intact, unlike Nitish Kumar’s JD-U and BJP,” RJD spokesperson Bhai Birendra said.
This is the second time this year when RJD has contested polls in the absence of party chief Lalu Prasad, who is in jail after being convicted in the fodder scam.