Kushwaha Says BJP Seat Offer for 2019 Polls 'Not Respectable', Will Only Speak to PM Modi Now
Upendra Kushwaha, the Union minister of state for HRD, said that he had tried to negotiate the seat sharing arrangement with BJP chief Amit Shah but it was unsuccessful.
File photo of Rashtriya Lok Samata Party (RLSP) president Upendra Kushwaha. (PTI)
Patna: NDA ally Rashtriya Lok Samata Party (RLSP) president Upendra Kushwaha said the BJP's offer of seats to his party for the 2019 general election was "not respectable". He did not disclose the number of seats offered to the RLSP, saying he would not speak about it before a seat-sharing agreement is reached by NDA constituents in Bihar by November 30.
Kushwaha, the Union minister of state for HRD, said that he had tried to negotiate the seat sharing arrangement with Amit Shah but it was unsuccessful. “I will now try and meet PM Narendra Modi and ask him for intervention… no other BJP leader except the prime minister,” he said while speaking to reporters after the RLSP state executive meeting.
Chief Minister Nitish Kumar's "insult" to Kushwaha was also discussed in the meeting. The RLSP chief is at loggerheads with Kumar over the Bihar chief minister's recent remarks against him. Responding to a journalist's query about Kushwaha's claim that Kumar did not want to continue as CM after the 2020 assembly polls, he had said: "should not be lowered (itna neeche mat giraiye)"
The RLSP leader alleged that Kumar referred to him as 'neech', a charge vehemently denied by the JD(U) which also released videos of the event. He also claimed that Kumar wants to destroy his party and that the remark was tantamount to calling him a lowly person.
Speaking to reporters in Delhi before his return to Patna, Kushwaha had claimed that his party wanted its share of seats in the Lok Sabha elections in 2019 to be commensurate with its "increased" strength compared to the 2014 polls when it had contested on three seats.
The BJP has indicated that it is unlikely to spare more than two seats for him.
Kushwaha also targeted BJP leader and Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Kumar Modi for defending Kumar, signalling his growing isolation within the coalition. When asked about this, he had said, "I am in the NDA as of now."
Bihar has a total of 40 Lok Sabha seats. Union minister Ram Vilas Paswan-led Lok Janshakti Party is another National Democratic Alliance constituent besides the BJP, JD(U) and RLSP.
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