PATNA: After failing to stitch an alliance with BJP in Uttar Pradesh, the top leadership of Janata Dal-United (JD-U) has started targeting Union Minister R.C.P. Singh.
Singh, a minister in the Modi cabinet, is said to have close links with BJP top leadership despite him becoming union minister under JD-U quota. The party had given him responsibility to make an alliance with the BJP for UP polls, but he failed.
JD-U national president Rajiv Ranjan Singh alias Lalan Singh has already said that the delay in announcement of the candidates for Uttar Pradesh elections is due to R.C.P Singh.
For the last couple of days, JD-U's junior leaders are advocating for R.C.P. Singh to lead the party in the election campaign of Uttar Pradesh. They have pointed out that Singh who was a former IAS officer and served in Uttar Pradesh for a long time, understands the ground situation better there.
"The idea is to bring Singh face-to-face with top BJP leadership, especially PM Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah during the election campaign. This will sour the relationship of RCP Singh with BJP leadership," said an official of the RJD requesting anonymity.
Bihar CM Nitish Kumar had given responsibility to R.C.P. Singh to negotiate with BJP during the second expansion of the Narendra Modi government last year. JD-U wanted two cabinet ministers and two state ministers in the union council of ministers but Singh accepted just one cabinet minister post for himself under JD-U quota which antagonised leaders in the rank of Lalan Singh, Upendra Kushwaha and others.
However, R.C.P. Singh has not yet reacted to the development. His official twitter handle is also silent these days.
The JD-U has shortlisted 51 candidates and 26 of them have been announced so far. These 26 candidates are contesting on those seats where BJP is either having strong hold or having sitting MLAs.