Patna: Bihar Chief Minister and Janata Dal (United) national president Nitish Kumar on Saturday put to rest speculations and clearly told senior party leaders that the alliance with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) would continue in Bihar.
In a meeting with party’s national general secretaries, secretaries, state presidents and few other leaders at Bihar Niwas in New Delhi, the Bihar CM was authorised to take political decisions on behalf of the JD(U).
Most of the leaders agreed with Nitish Kumar’s point of view that the alliance with the BJP must continue in Bihar. However, it was made clear that the alliance was limited to Bihar only and the party would continue to expand base in other states.
Party leaders also deliberated upon complex seat-sharing formula for the next Lok Sabha elections as the issue recently became a flashpoint in JD(U)-BJP alliance. A senior leader, who was present in the meeting, said if the alliance with RJD-Congress had continued, the JD(U) could not have claimed its stake on more than 17 to 18 seats out of 40 Lok Sabha seats in the state.
The JD(U) leaders discussed possible seat sharing arrangement and broadly were on the same page that the party can logically claim maximum 18 seats.
“The best scenario would be BJP and JD(U) both contesting 17 seats each and leave other six seats for other allies, like the LJP and the RLSP," the senior leader said.
Nitish Kumar is set to meet BJP president Amit Shah in Patna on July 12 in which seat sharing issue is likely to figure and both sides believe the matter would be resolved in the meeting itself.
“We are clear that the alliance with BJP will continue. The RJD leaders used to taunt him saying 'jao tilak laga diya', compared to that running the government with the BJP has been easy. The RJD always boasted about its big brother position since they had 80 seats compared to JD(U)’s 71," the JD(U) leader said.
“On the other hand, there are no such issues with BJP as they are the time tested alliance partner of 17 years. It’s true that Modi wave helped the BJP clinch 22 seats in the last elections but in a changed political scenario after our return in the NDA fold everybody has to make sacrifice,” he added.