Paswan loses another Muslim leader
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Last Updated: Tuesday, November 08, 2011, 21:45
  
New Delhi: With its political stock already down, LJP of former Union Minister Ramvilas Paswan on Tuesday received a setback with its Rajya Sabha member Sabir Ali resigning from the party.

There is a strong indication of Ali joining JD(U) of Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar.

Announcing his resignation from LJP at a press conference, Ali said, "The Muslim community has lost faith in LJP and its leaders...for Muslim community, he never did what he actually promised... The party is being run like a private limited company by him and his family."

With the departure of Ali, LJP is left with one member in the Rajya Sabha and one MLA in the Bihar Assembly. The party does not have any member in the Lok Sabha.

Paswan, after being defeated in the general election, had last year managed to go to the Upper House with the help of RJD. The party has a lone member in the Bihar Assembly in Zakir Hussain Khan.

LJP, which in alliance with RJD of Lalu Prasad, claims it will make a comeback in Bihar, has no representation in the Legislative Council after all three party MLCs quit the party in June this year and joined the ruling JD(U).

LJP, which boasts of championing the cause of Muslims, has lost its minority leaders from time-to-time. Earlier, its state president Ghulam Rasool Billiawi and former MLA Ijhar Ahmed had walked out.

Putting up a brave face, Paswan tried to play down Ali's resignation saying his exit will not impact LJP's popularity among the Muslim community.

"He had already made his plans to exit very clear and we were also wishing that this problem should end as early as possible. Such things will never harm our standing and presence in Muslim community," Paswan told PTI.

On why the Muslim faces in the party are deserting it, he said, "Party makes leaders and it is not the other way round. These things will hardly impact the party."

Reacting to the development, JD (U) spokesperson Shivanand Tiwari, MP, attacked the LJP president and said he along with the RJD President Lalu Yadav was involved in "phoney secularism".

Tiwari, who had left the RJD to join JD(U) earlier, praised Nitish Kumar government's performance in the state.

"Seeing the sincere welfare schemes of Nitish Kumar's government, Muslim leaders and supporters are joining the party," he said.

Ali said he had been considering the option of quitting LJP for about a year.

"I kept asking Ramvilas Paswan about his views on party's policies and its future. Politics is not done from drawing room. You have to go and meet people. But our state president believes in drawing room politics only. This is reason LJP has deteriorated to such levels," he said.

On whether JD (U) is a better alternative for him, he said, "This is not my view but the way Bihar has changed under Nitish Kumar's leadership is recognized by everyone. Nitish Kumar has a vision for development and progressive policies.

I am sure that Bihar will bounce back to regain its glory under the stewardship and acumen of Nitish Kumar and other prominent leader of the JD(U)," Ali said.

PTI


First Published: Tuesday, November 08, 2011, 21:45


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