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Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Delhi Confidential: Patna Via Ranchi?

Some Opposition leaders maintain that a new political equation will take shape in Bihar before the polls scheduled later this year.

By: Express News Service | New Delhi | Published: February 13, 2020 2:30:35 am
Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar. Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar.

With Assembly elections in Delhi over, the political focus is slowly shifting to Bihar. Although Home Minister and senior BJP leader Amit Shah has already declared that Nitish Kumar will be the NDA’s chief minister candidate and Nitish, too, seems to be fine with the alliance, and has purged anti-BJP voices from his party, the Opposition is hopeful of the JD(U) chief’s return to the secular fold. Some Opposition leaders maintain that a new political equation will take shape in Bihar before the polls scheduled later this year. While the Congress is not against Nitish returning to the RJD-Congress alliance, the RJD, especially Lalu Prasad’s son Tejashwi Yadav, is said to be not too keen. Some Opposition leaders now plan to gauge Lalu’s mind and seek his intervention — it is learnt that some of them have asked Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren to relax restrictions on visiting Lalu in jail in Ranchi so that they can meet him more often and try to work out a credible anti-BJP front in Bihar.

Critical Of ‘Protocol’

A prominent BJP leader from Gautam Buddh Nagar has complained against Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath in a letter to party president J P Nadda. The leader is learnt to have criticised the state government’s decision of sending the district magistrate to hand over a cheque of Rs 20 lakh to family members of Gaurav Chandel, who was murdered recently, ignoring elected representatives from the district. The BJP leader wrote that if elected representatives were asked to hand over the cheque, it could have sent a good message in public.

No Poll Posers, Please

Otherwise open to questions about the government and his party, Union minister Prakash Javadekar ducked when he was about to be questioned on the BJP’s crushing defeat in Delhi Assembly polls. After questions related to the government were over at the end of the weekly press briefing on Cabinet decisions on Wednesday, a journalist began a question about the election result. A smiling Javadekar said that he knows the questions that will come. He added that queries about the party should be put to him at the party office, and the Cabinet briefing is not the right forum. Although reminded by journalists that he has used the same platform earlier to make political comments, Javadekar, who was the BJP in-charge for the Delhi elections, did not give in and refused to speak on the results, which came out on Tuesday.

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