Senior JD(U) leader Sharad Yadav will attend the silver jubilee celebrations of Samajwadi Party in Lucknow on November 5, in what is being seen as a step towards bringing in renewed unity in the socialist camp ahead of the Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections. “After our president Nitish Kumar had wide consultations with other leaders, the JD(U) has decided that Sharad Yadav will be present in the Samajwadi Party foundation day function along with Ajit Singh of RLD,” JD(U) Secretary General K C Tyagi told PTI.
The decision to participate in the SP event was taken after talks with RLD chief Ajit Singh, with whom Janata Dal (United) has formed a grouping for the 2017 UP Assembly polls, Tyagi said. Bihar Chief Minister and JD(U) President Nitish Kumar had said yesterday that he would not be able to attend the SP event due to Chhath festival.
The JD(U) Secretary General said the party would respond “positively” to any proposal for seat-adjustment, formation of a front or an alliance from Samajwadi Party President Mulayam Singh Yadav with regard to the UP polls. JD(U)’s decision to send its representative to SP function would come as a booster for the beleaguered ruling party in UP, which has invited prominent leaders of socialist and secular leanings for the November 5 rally at Lucknow. The move may also pave way for formation of a strong coalition against BJP in the northern state.
RJD President Lalu Prasad has already confirmed his participation in the SP function. Prasad who is related to Mulayam Singh Yadav as his daughter is married to Tej Pratap Singh Yadav, SP MP from Mainpuri and grandnephew of SP chief, has already made it clear that RJD would not field any candidate in the neighbouring state and that he would campaign in support of SP.
Sharad Yadav, former JD(U) President, had earlier been active in bringing about a merger of six parties of Janata Parivar which did not succeed ultimately. SP leader Shivpal Yadav had recently said Lohiaites and followers of Charan Singh should join hands to beat BJP in UP. Nitish Kumar had said that the abortive bid of the merger of splinter parties of Janata Parivar does not mean that no such efforts would be made in future and that it would not succeed again.