PATNA: Rashtriya Lok Samta Party (RLSP) chief Upendra Kushwaha today said Jitan HAM(S) chief Ram Manjhi's absence would be felt in the NDA but his party would not leave the BJP-led coalition.
Former chief minister and Hindustani Awam Morcha (Secular) president Jitan Ram Manjhi had on February 28 walked out of the NDA and joined the RJD-led Grand Alliance.
"It is quite natural to feel the absence of any person if he goes out (of the alliance)," Kushwaha, also an Union minister, told reporters.
However, he termed reports that his party too would leave the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) as "absurd and baseless".
Senior RJD leader Raghuvansh Prasad Singh had on January 29 that some senior leaders of the NDA in Bihar were feeling "uneasy" in the coalition and planning to leave.
He had mentioned Manjhi and Kushwaha.
Manjhi left the NDA a month later claiming that 'faulty' sand mining policy of the Nitish Kumar government had stalled construction activities and thereby badly hit workers from the Mahadalit section.
To a question on whether the RLSP too leave the NDA, the union minister of state for human resources development said "This is completely baseless and absurd.
If people like Raghuvansh Prasad Singh says so, it is not good for him also.
" He said the NDA would win by-polls in two Assembly seats, Bhabhua and Jehanabad, and Araria Lok Sabha constituency to be held on March 11.
Kushwaha would campaign in Bhabhua and Araria on March 6 and 8 respectively.
The RLSP chief announced the party's programme- "Shiksha Sudhar Pustak Upahar programme" in which NCERT books would be gifted to all Kasturba Gandhi Vidyalayas in Bihar on April 11 on the occasion of Mahatma Jyotiba Phule's birth anniversary.
He said the party would collect funds from the people from March 24 for the purpose.