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Cong yet to decide on alliance in Bihar

PTI | Last Updated: Sunday, January 12, 2014 - 10:37

New Delhi: Congress appears to be in two minds on the issue of alliance in Bihar despite top leaders of the party having met both RJD supremo Lalu Prasad and LJP chief Ram Vilas Paswan in past weeks.

 Sources say that while the predominant opinion of party leaders from Bihar is that it should ally with RJD, some leaders close to Rahul Gandhi are wary of a Congress-RJD tie up after Prasad`s conviction in the fodder scam case.
The second school is of the belief that the anti- corruption image being built around the Congress Vice President after he junked the ordinance on convicted lawmakers, disapproved Maharashtra government`s decision to reject a report on Adarsh scam that indicted Congress leaders and his strong pitch for creating a framework to fight corruption will suffer if it allies with Prasad.

 The leaders believe that an alliance with JD-U, which had broken ties from BJP last June, is much more comfortable though many in the party are skeptical about the vote base of Nitish Kumar`s party and its ability to transfer those votes.

 "What will happen if we contest Lok Sabha elections on our own," quipped a senior AICC functionary giving an impression that the party is yet to discard Rahul`s go-alone pitch which was also a factor for no alliance happening between Congress and RJD last time.
 This section believes that Congress, which had won two seats in Bihar in 2009 when it fought alone, may win three four more seats if it seals an alliance but then the long-term plan to build the party in the Hindi heartland will suffer. A number of Congress leaders in past had blamed Congress` tie up with RJD for the near decimation of the party in the state.

 There is also a view in the party that aligning with either JD-U or RJD may push the other party towards the Opposition be it BJP or Third Front or some emerging new front.

 Leaders of this viewpoint think that if Congress does not ally with either then it will be in a better position to seek the support of both Prasad and Kumar in a post-poll scenario.

First Published: Sunday, January 12, 2014 - 10:37

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