NEW DELHI: Trying to scotch speculation, the Janata Dal (U) on Sunday said it will stay with the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance, though it will take a final call on seat sharing in Bihar for the 2019 general elections after seeing the BJP offer.
At its national executive meeting here, the JD(U) authorised its president and Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar to finalise the party’s stand on political issues, including the upcoming Assembly and Lok Sabha polls.
Seat sharing was seen as a reason for the recent strain in ties between the two parties. Another sticking point was the lack of positive response from the Centre on the demand for special economic status to Bihar.
Also, the JD(U) failing to get a berth during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s last reshuffle of his council of ministers was a sore point.
However, the JD(U) sought to play down reports of strain, saying the ruling alliance will fight the election together and sweep it.
“It will be decided later as to which party will contest how many seats. The NDA will fight the elections together and sweep the state,” JD(U) general secretary Sanjay Kumar Jha said.
In his address at the meeting, Nitish said all efforts to eliminate and isolate his party will end up in isolation of those that were trying to do so. Referring to comments of some Congress leaders who had dangled an alliance bait before Nitish if he snaps ties with the BJP, party leader K C Tyagi said a debate over it is meaningless until the Congress ends its relationship with a “corrupt party” like the RJD.
Asked if the JD(U) would hold talks with the Congress if it snaps ties with the RJD, Tyagi said the Congress is unlikely to end its ties with Lalu Yadav.
The JD(U) also hit out at Union ministers Giriraj Singh and Jayant Sinha. While Singh met some persons accused of rioting and claimed that the state government was suppressing Hindus, Sinha had garlanded people convicted of lynching a man in Jharkhand.
“We do not think what they have done is good. We condemn it,” Tyagi said.