11 September, Patna
The deliberations over the seat sharing in poll-bound Bihar continued today in the National Democratic Alliance(NDA) with no outcome so far even as the allies have maintained that there were no major differences over the issue within the alliance.
“If we get more seats, it will only benefit the NDA,” Jitan Ram Manjhi, Bihar’s deposed Chief Minister and founder of Hindustani Awam Morcha, told a television channel, indicating the ongoing tussle between various NDA allies to garner the maximum share.
Today’s meetings were chaired by BJP president Amit Shah and Union minister and in-charge of Bihar Ananth Kumar. Elsewhere, speaking to media, Lok Janshakti Party(LJP) Chief Ram Vilas Paswan said giving 46 seats to his party would meet the end of justice to its popularity and mass base in the state.
Manjhi, who is contesting the same space of Dalit and Mahadalit caste category, is said to be at loggerheads with LJP’s demand. However, the NDA leadership and the allies continue to keep a straight face as closed door meetings have continued over past few days, without any result in sight. Bihar BJP leader Sushil Modi in an interview to a channel last night indicated that it was natural for the BJP to expect the largest share, being the largest party. However, he did not admit that he was being positioned as the Chief Ministerial candidate.
The channel poll put NDA ahead of Janata Parivar both in number of seats and vote share. However the same poll put Modi behind the incumbent Chief Minister Nitish Kumar as Chief Ministerial candidate. LJP strongman’s Ram Vila Paswan’s son Chirag Paswan fared third but close to Mr Modi in the popularity ranking for the top job. “There is really no need for us to announce the Chief Ministerial candidate.
Earlier, too, we have won the elections in Jharkhand without even declaring the candidate,” BJP leader Shahnawaz Hussain said, adding,”The face of Modi ji is enough to convince voter.”
In the meantime, Congress took a dig at the continued delay in declaration of seat-sharing among the NDA partners saying more cracks will come to the fore very soon. The Left parties have already declared their seat sharing arrangement at Patna today.
The NDA’s Principal adversary Janata Parivar also has already sorted out their seat sharing formula under which JDU and RJD will fight 100 seats each and 40 will be contested by the Congress.
Annoyed with leftover five seats, Samajwadi Party Supremo and Parivar founder Mulayam Singh has opted out and has declared that the party will go solo in all the 243 seats in the election.
Making light of speculations, BJP’s Ananth Kumar had yesterday said that the issue will be sorted out in two to three days and NDA will fight the election as one, undivided entity all over Bihar. Publicaly, all allies have sworn by their faith on Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP Chief Amit Shah and have said they will abide by their decision.