NCP issues ultimatum to 'grand alliance' in Bihar, sticks to its demand of 12 seats
Patna: NCP on Sunday issued an ultimatum to secular 'grand alliance' in Bihar to reconsider seat distribution by August 20 saying it will not settle for less than 12 seats in the assembly elections and "all options were open to it."
"Injustice has been meted out to us in seat sharing. We will not tolerate it. We are giving an ultimatum to the grand alliance to reconsider seat distribution by August 20, otherwise all options are open for us. The ball is now in their court," NCP General Secretary Tariq Anwar said here.
"We will not agree on anything less than 12 seats. It is our demand and its acceptance or rejection will decide whether we remain in the grand alliance or exit from it," Anwar Lok Sabha member from Katihar said.
The grand alliance led by Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar includes JD(U), Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD), Congress, NCP and Samajwadi Party (SP). It has been cobbled up with an aim to check BJP-led NDA in the Assembly polls.
The NCP is peeved because the alliance declared its seat-sharing arrangement for the 243-member Lower House last Wednesday, giving 100 seats each to JD(U) and RJD, 40 to Congress and leaving a meagre three seats for it.
Anwar argued that ignoring NCP indicates that either the alliance doesn't feel the need of the party anymore or thinks that a 'Muslim face' is not necessary for it.
"It could be thinking that it will achieve success without us," he added.
He also revealed that his party was neither invited for talks on seat-sharing, nor for the joint press conference of alliance leaders in which Kumar, RJD chief Lalu Prasad and Congress Bihar in-charge C P Joshi announced seat distribution arrangement.
"We fail to understand the formula or the basis according to which the seats were distributed. We contested one seat and won it in the last Lok Sabha elections. Congress won just two out of 12 it fought. JD(U) won just two out of 40 while RJD won four seats. Even on this basis we should have got more seats," he added.
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