NEW DELHI: With the political crisis in Bihar deepening, JD(U)'s ally Congress today attacked Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP, alleging that they were "hand in glove" with Chief Minister Jitan Ram Manjhi.
"What happened there is an internal problem (of JD-U). We do not know what is going to be the fall out of all this. But we see a BJP gameplan behind all this. He is a JD(U) Chief Minister. He came to Delhi, waited for a day and met the Prime Minister. The Prime Minister himself is a conspirator.
"There is no business for him (Manjhi) to come and meet the Prime Minister.... His coming, canvassing, meeting the Prime Minister shows that BJP is hand in glove with the defector of the JD(U) and they are trying to prop him up against JD(U)," Congress spokesperson P C Chacko said.
RJD spokesperson Manoj Jha alleged that while it was clear for some time that the BJP was playing from behind the scenes in this entire episode and was trying to use Manjhi as a "puppet", they have "come out in open now".
The power struggle in Bihar JD(U) appears headed for a full-fledged confrontation in the Assembly as Manjhi yesterday ruled out his resignation and braced for a show of strength against Nitish Kumar in the House.
Kumar is also meeting Governor Kesari Nath Tripathi at 1.30 PM to stake claim to form government. JD(U) yesterday submitted letters of support from the RJD, Congress, CPI and an independent MLA to the Governor claiming that Nitish had the backing of 130 MLAs in a 243-member House.
Manjhi, however, termed the election of Nitish Kumar as Leader of JD-U Legislature Party in his absence as "illegal and unconstitutional" and also raised doubts over the support claim by Nitish Kumar.
Bihar Speaker Uday Narayan Chaudhary too recognised Nitish Kumar as the new leader JD(U)LP leader and the party said it had replaced Manjhi after he refused to step down. Manjhi, who was in the national capital in connection with the meeting of Niti Aayog, met Prime Minister Narendra Modi and some BJP leaders amid speculation that BJP could play a crucial role in a possible trial of strength.
The Bihar Chief Minister also did not rule out taking BJP's support to keep his government afloat saying he will welcome whoever backs his government.
Jha alleged that BJP was doing this because it has "panicked" due to talks of RJD-JD(U) merger and expressed confidence that people of the state will see through all this and ensure that whatever happens is constitutionally and democratically correct.