Patna: A day after Sushil Kumar Modi was virtually endorsed as BJP's chief ministerial candidate in the Bihar Assembly polls due later this year, LJP on Saturday sought to fall in line saying it will go with whatever decision the saffron party takes on the issue.
"We will go with the BJP on whatever decision it takes on anointment of any leader as its chief ministerial face in Bihar, including Sushil Kumar Modi," LJP chief and Union Food and Consumer Affairs Minister Ramvilas Paswan said.
Paswan had sometime ago vehemently opposed the idea of a local BJP leader being projected as the chief ministerial candidate in the state and said the saffron party should contest the polls on Prime Minister Narendra Modi's charisma and mass appeal.
Asked to comment, the LJP chief said he still believed that the prime minister should lead NDA's campaign in Bihar Assembly polls as his appeal among the masses was intact despite the Delhi Assembly poll result.
"Modi's charisma remains intact and he will swing the fortune in favour of the BJP-led NDA in Bihar Assembly polls on his mass appeal alone," he said and described the verdict in Delhi Assembly polls as an one-off thing.
"Let us not forget that the PM had successfully led BJP's electoral campaign in Haryana, Maharashtra and Jharkhand," he addded.
Sushil Modi, a senior Bihar BJP leader and a former deputy chief minister, was virtually endorsed as the party's chief ministerial face in the next assembly polls in Bihar by Union Urban Development Minister M Venkaiah Naidu yesterday.
"The people of Bihar are fortunate that they have a leader like Sushil Kumar Modi with a spotless political life. One Modi at the Centre and another Modi helming Bihar will be good for the state and its people. They should support such a leadership," Naidu had said.
Addressing a press conference at Hajipur earlier in the day Paswan lashed out at the JD(U) government in Bihar for delaying issuance of ration cards to the beneficiaries.
"As many as 1.10 crore poor people have been deprived of subsidised food grains due to the inordinate delay in issuance of fresh ration cards for them under the Right to Food Act," he said.
He directed the concerned department to immediately issue ration cards to those who were yet to get it and submit the list to his ministry so that required food grain could be released for disbursal to all beneficiaries.
On Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar's opposition to Land Acquisition Bill, Paswan said though the proposed legislation was not binding on all states, his personal view was that the the state government should implement it in view of benefits to the farmers and landowners.
The land bill proposes acquisition of fallow and non-agricultural land for development projects at substantially high rate which will benefit landowners who have large tracts of non-agricultural land, Paswan said adding the proposed bill has sought to protect the farmers' interest by provisioning for acquisition of farm land, if necessary, at four times more than prevailing market rate.
On the splintered Janata Parivar members' merger gaining currency after Kumar's meeting with the SP supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav and RJD chief Lalu Prasad in Delhi over the past two days, the LJP chief said he was confident that the merger will not take place but did not elaborate.