The BJP’s alliance with the Janata Dal (United) was teetering on the brink of separation Friday,the eve of a crucial JD(U) meeting over the weekend,with Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar saying that circumstances were not in favour of saving the alliance.
Dua dete hain jeene ki aur dawa dete hain marne ki (they bless us to live and medicate us to die), Kumar told reporters when asked about the future of the alliance after he returned to Patna after his Katihar Sewa Yatra. While several people have been giving suggestions on saving the alliance,circumstances are not favouring such sentiments.
While the BJPs top national leadership continued to urge the JD(U) not to end the relationship that is more than 17 years old,BJP leaders in Bihar accused the JD(U) of trying to split the BJP and poach its MLAs. The BJP also decided Friday that all its 16 ministers including deputy CM Sushil Kumar Modi would not go to office and accept new files.
The state BJP also alleged that the HRD department refused to allot a school ground in Patna for BJP president Rajnath Singh’s function on June 23.
How can JD(U) think of splitting a party like BJP? We never thought JD(U) leaders can stoop to this level. At least eight of our MLAs,angered with the JD(U)s offer,revealed it to the party and also identified the JD(U)callers. We will expose them at the right time, BJP state president Mangal Pandey told The Indian Express.
He said independent MLA Dilip Verma had also claimed that the JD(U) had offered him a ministerial berth in exchange for his support.
No one can work under such circumstances when JD(U) leaders are targeting us and its mukhiya has been keeping mum. We have asked all our ministers to stay put in Patna until June 17. Nitishji should remember that people had given a overwhelming mandate to the NDA,not just JDU. Enough is enough, Pandey said.
He said it was not graceful on the JD(U)s part to not allow the use of the school ground for the BJP function when the JD(U) has used the same ground for similar functions several times. HRD minister P K Shahi,however,refused to react to the allegations.
JD(U) Rajya Sabha MP Ali Anwar,however,said Pandey should not make baseless allegations. Let us part ways gracefully so that there can be scope left to meet again, he said.
Anwar said JD(U) national president Sharad Yadav would arrive in Patna by Saturday evening. Although no formal meeting is called,senior leaders will discuss the future of the alliance on Saturday and Sunday and take a decision later, Anwar said,adding that the time was ripe to call it quits.
JD(U) sources said that although several leaders,including MLAs,were in favour of ending the alliance now,Yadav is believed to want to wait for a while and not rush the separation. A section of JD(U) leaders are of the view that popular sentiment is not in favour of the split at the moment. Either we should have parted ways soon after Narendra Modis anointment in Goa or we should wait until Modi attends the October Hunkar rally of BJP in Patna, said a senior JD(U) leader.
In Delhi though,leaders of both parties sounded conciliatory with Sharad Yadav claiming that his party had given no ultimatum to the BJP but cautioned against what he said was deviation from the national agenda of the NDA.
The alliance of NDA exists for now but the alliance has to continue under the norms of the national agenda of NDA under which the coalition has functioned so far . But we have objections to the remarks made by BJP leaders after that, Yadav told reporters referring to Modis projection as the BJPs chief campaigner. The speeches made in Goa went beyond the national agenda.
On their part,BJP leaders Rajnath Singh and Sushma Swaraj sought to remind the JD(U) of its anti-Congress stance to remain within the NDA fold to defeat the Congress-led UPA regime.
Only a united opposition can defeat Congress. Whenever opposition got united,Congress was defeated. Therefore,NDAs unity is a historical necessity. We must do everything to keep NDA united, Swaraj tweeted Friday.
Singh also expressed his desire to keep the NDA intact,saying that the BJP does not want to break the alliance.
We will never want to break the BJP-JD(U) alliance. Our alliance with the JD(U) is more than 17 years old, Singh tweeted.
With inputs from ENS,Delhi