Patna: Two days after formally announcing the candidature of former Jawaharlal Nehru University Students Union president Kanhaiya Kumar from the Begusarai Lok Sabha seat in Bihar, the Communist Party of India (CPI) mounted a scathing attack on Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD), a key player in the opposition ‘Grand Alliance’, directly blaming it for not backing the student leader.
RJD played a spoiler, said Satyanarayan Singh, CPI state secretary, alleging that RJD and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) have joined hands to defeat Kanhaiya Kumar.
Satnarayan Singh, state secretary of CPI, said RJD and Congress joined hands to defeat Kanhaiya Kumar.”This is the reason why CPI was not given Begusarai seat by the RJD despite Congress strongly favoured for him under the seat sharing formula of the Grand Alliance”.
Targeting jailed RJD chief Lalu Prasad for his U-turn, Singh said: ”It was Lalu who had promised that Tejashwi (Lalu Prasad’s son and leader of Opposition in the Assembly) and Kanhaiya will jointly fight the elections, but now at the time of elections, he has changed”.
Sources in RJD said that the party was reluctant to support Kanhaiya Kumar on the ground that in last Lok Sabha polls, the RJD candidate Tanveer Hasan got nearly 3.5 lakh votes in Begusarai. Though he was defeated by BJP's Bhola Singh, Hasan managed to prove his popularity, and was keen on contesting this time.
This is the first time that a CPI leader has directly attacked RJD and Lalu Prasad for not supporting Kanhaiya Kumar in the polls.
After the formal announcement of his candidature last Sunday, Kanhaiya said his direct fight would be with BJP’s likely candidate Giriraj Singh. "My fight is to defeat the communal and fascist forces in the country. I am confident and sure that people of Begusarai will support and vote me" he said.
Meanwhile, Kanhaiya Kumar raised Rs 10 lakh in seven hours to fund his campaign, according to a release by crowdfunding platform, ourdemocracy.in. He plans to raise about Rs 70 lakh for his election campaign, which is the permissible limit of expenditure in parliamentary polls, as per the Election Commission.