Cong Allies' Show of Unity as BJP Seals Deal

Published: 15th September 2015 05:06 AM  |   Last Updated: 15th September 2015 05:06 AM   |  A+A-

NEW DELHI: The battle for Bihar is being fought as much in Delhi as in the state. So, close on the heels of BJP unveiling a 160-40-23-20 seat-sharing equation with its Bihar allies at its Ashoka Road headquarters, a stone’s throw away, the opposite combine — JD(U)-RJD-Congress — provided a counter text at the latter’s Akbar Road office. The opposing alliance-trio — for the first time sharing a Congress podium in New Delhi with the hand symbol displayed in the background — alleged that “tourism and free train travel” for a ‘Mumbai darshan’ and such other trips were being organised by a few BJP-affiliates for the party’s booth-level workers and young voters, with the Railway Ministry providing subsidy.

This, they alleged, was in violation of the Election Commission’s model code of conduct, queering the level playing field in Bihar. It is “political tourism” to various BJP-ruled state capitals, Mumbai, Raipur, Bhopal and Jaipur, they cried. “Thrilled with the free trips, hotel-stay and site-seeing, the travelers are expected to give first-person accounts of development in other states convincingly to Bihar voters,’’ was the allegation.

JD-U MP K C Tyagi, IFS-turned-politico Pavan K Verma, Congress’ Randeep Surjewala, C P Joshi and RJD spokesperson Manoj Jha cried foul. They also lined up well-known Supreme Court lawyer and Rajya Sabha member KTS Tulsi to add legal heft to the charge.

Back from petitioning the poll-panel, Varma and Surjewala said: “This involves open misuse of government machinery to facilitate BJP’s campaign in Bihar, with illegal support of Ministry of Railways, causing loss to the public exchequer.’’

Though the novelty of the violation alleged was not lost, the real import of the presser — a show of unity among rem­aining members of Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar’s Grand Alliance — was not missed.

What’s more, the Congress hinted that “talks with NCP’’ were on and there may be a surprise in store. As for Mulayam Singh, he has his “troubles to sort out’’, said Surjewala.

Stay up to date on all the latest Nation news with The New Indian Express App. Download now
(Get the news that matters from New Indian Express on WhatsApp. Click this link and hit 'Click to Subscribe'. Follow the instructions after that.)

Comments

Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp