New Delhi: Bihar is likely to witness another round of political drama as 19 of the 27 Congress MLAs have urged Vice President Rahul Gandhi to snap ties with Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD), at least for the time being, claimed report published in Times of India.
The MLAs have put forth the demand in the recent meeting, which was organised to resolve the faction feud in Bihar. The MLAs told Rahul Gandhi that the Rashtriya Janata Dal chief Lalu Prasad Yadav had never been faithful to Congress. Reportedly, the Bihar lawmakers said that the RJD supremo remained critical of the upper castes and kept the Muslim-Yadav constituencies with his party, and consequently Congress was unable to perform well in Bihar for two decades.
Talking to TOI, Congress MLA from Bhagalpur, Ajit Sharma who met Rahul on Wednesday said,"I told Rahul that Congress does not need an alliance with RJD in Bihar for the time being. If need be, we can get back to RJD prior to 2019 elections to defeat BJP for which Rahul and Sonia should take initiative. As of now, continuance of alliance with RJD would weaken the morale of party workers in the state."
Sharma also accused RJD of being unfair to the grand old party. "RJD used to give us those seats on which we could never win. Besides, none of the posters of RJD's recently held anti-BJP rally had photographs of either Sonia or Rahul even though Lalu kept taking their names to promote the rally. Congress is a national party and it should not be dictated by RJD," TOI quoted the Bhagalpur Congress MLA as saying.
On the other hand, amid fears of a rebellion, Bihar Pradesh Congress Committee (BPCC) chief Ashok Chaudhary had accused senior AICC functionaries of conspiring against him. As per the reports of TOI, Chaudhary skipped the meeting citing prior engagements and said that he would meet Sonia and Rahul very soon. On being asked, why he did not participate in the meeting, he said,"I met Sonia and Rahul twice after Bihar CM Nitish Kumar dumped the Grand Alliance. As I had some personal engagements, I could not attend the meeting."
It has been said that Gandhi had called senior Congress legislators to Delhi in a damage-control exercise to prevent a large section of MLAs from deserting the party. A week ago, it was reported that at least 14 Congress MLAs were planning to switch sides and about to join Nitish Kumar headed Janata Dal (United).
JD (U) president and Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on July 26 snapped ties with Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) and the Congress. The three parties had formed the Mahagathbandhan in 2015 and swept to power in the Assembly elections held in October-November that year. However, Kumar walked out of the 'Mahagathbandhan' following allegations of corruption against RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav, who was then the deputy chief minister of the state. The JD (U) joined hands with the Bharatiya Janata Party to retain power leaving the Congress, which is already a spent force in the state, staring at an uncertain future.