The Lok Janshakti Party (LJP) has ensured victory of the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD)-led Mahagathbandhan by taking away votes of the Janata Dal-United (JD-U) in at least 35 seats, reveals data collected from across constituencies.
The LJP won just one seat in Begusarai’s Matihani where party candidate Raj Kumar Singh defeated JD(U)’s Narendra Kumar Singh. The party, led by Chirag Paswan, contested on nearly 140 seats in the Assembly elections, pitching candidates mostly against the JD(U).
Based on the figures released by the Election Commission, the RJD won 28 seats against the JD(U) where the total votes of the NDA and LJP combined exceeded the RJD’s voteshare.
In the other seven seats, Congress candidates defeated JD(U) nominees as the LJP divided the NDA voteshare.
The data shows that in at least seven seats -- Alauli, Bajpatti, Darbhanga Rural, Dhauraiya, Khagaria, Maharajganj and Rajpakar – the vote margin between the Mahagathbandan and the JD(U) was less than 3,000.
Had the LJP not fielded candidates in these constituencies, the JD(U) would have had a different tally. The Nitish Kumar-headed JD(U) won 43 of the 115 seats it contested from. The party had bagged 71 seats in the last Assembly elections.
Earlier, Chirag Paswan had appealed his supporters to vote for the NDA where the BJP is contesting, while appealing to BJP voters to choose LJP candidates. This hurt the JD(U) as the party is now the smaller in the NDA.
जमुई विधानसभा से भाजपा प्रत्याशी छोटी बहन श्रेयशी सिंह को ढेर सारी शुभकामनाए।लोजपा के सभी कार्यकर्ताओं से अपील है की श्रेयशी की मदत करें।भाजपा प्रत्याशी और लोजपा प्रत्याशी ही मिल कर युवा बिहार नया बिहार बनाएँगे।जे॰डी॰यू॰ को दिया गया एक भी वोट शिक्षकों लाठी खाने पर मजबूर करेगा।— युवा बिहारी चिराग पासवान (@iChiragPaswan) October 17, 2020
JDU’s Jai Kumar Singh, in charge of the Department of Science and Technology, lost from Rohtas’ Dinara to RJD’s Vijay Kumar Mandal. He was first elected to the Assembly from the Dinara seat in 2010. LJP’s Rajendra Singh, a BJP rebel, was a determiner in the JD(U) minister’s defeat.
Similarly note, Shailesh Kumar lost to Congress’ Ajay Kumar Singh by a margin of 4,432 from Jamalpur seat.
Hours after the election results came out, Paswan expressed his happiness on the love showered on the LJP by Bihar’s voters. “Around 25 Lakh voters trusted 'Bihar First, Bihari First' and we secured 6 per cent votes while contesting alone. We were called 'pichhlaggu party' that can do something only with other's support. We showed courage.”
While Paswan has been criticising Kumar for a long time now, he has maintained that he supports the BJP and Prime Minister Narendra Modi. “One thing is clear that the people have given a clear mandate to PM Modi. People have understood that if we need development, we need to vote for Modi,” he added.
Not only JD(U), the LJP has also trimmed down voteshares if minor NDA parties like Jitan Ram Manjhi’s HAM and Mukesh Sahni’s VIP on four seats.
In Simri Bakhtiryarpur, the RJD candidate defeated VIP chief Mukesh Sahni with less than 2,000 votes. The LJP on the other hand secured 7,000 votes on the seat.
In Madhubani, the RJD defeated the VIP with a margin of around 5,000, while the LJP received 15,000 votes.
The LJP had earlier promised to support the NDA government after the election, while continuing its alliance with the BJP at the national level. He has also been advocating for a chief minister from the BJP.
Paswan had officially broken his party’s alliance with the BJP in Bihar for nominating Kumar as the NDA’s CM candidate.