The JD(U)-BJP split will see a major swing of Muslim votes in favour of the LJP-RJD combine in next year’s Lok Sabha elections, Lok Janshakti Party chief Ram Vilas Paswan claimed on Tuesday.
“The vertical rift between BJP and JD(U) will directly benefit the LJP-RJD combine and we are looking at favourable results in both the coming Lok Sabha polls as well as in Bihar elections later,” Mr. Paswan said in an interaction.
Mr. Paswan and his party’s minority cell’s national president Kunwar Asim Khan both concurred that in the wake of the split, Muslim votes will swing significantly in favour of the combine.
“Post the split, we are looking for something close to 80 per cent of Muslim votes in next elections. JD(U)-BJP loss will be LJP’s gain, both in the general elections and the State Assembly polls, and we will emerge victorious,” the Rajya Sabha MP said.
He called the results of Maharajganj LS bypoll in Bihar earlier as “signs of fall” for the JD(U) government, whose “real governance”, he alleged, had been exposed by Justice Markandey Katju earlier.
“The JD(U) time will be up very soon as evidenced by the Maharjganj bypoll results. And, the corrupt Nitish Kumar government and his newspaper-based governance have already been exposed by Justice Katju who has spoken about the ‘press censorship’ in the State,” Mr. Paswan claimed.
RJD had defeated JD(U) in the Maharajganj Lok Sabha bypoll this June by a convincing margin of over 1.37 lakh votes. Bihar has 40 Lok Sabha seats.
Mr. Paswan further attacked the Bihar government for “increasing crimes against Dalits and the poor and downtrodden in the still caste-ridden State.”
“A Dalit man was stoned to death in Rohtas district for trying to hoist a national flag near a temple, and many others were injured. There have been close to 10,000 cases of offences against the poor in the state. Their lives have only become miserable during this regime,” Mr. Paswan alleged.
“A corruption of Rs. 83,000 crore in the Bihar government has already been disclosed by the CAG. We’ll be riding on this moment and will definitely win the Parliamentary as well as the assembly elections,” he added.
Mr. Paswan’s son Chirag Paswan, also chairman of party’s parliamentary board, expressed hope of harnessing the youth power in Bihar and elsewhere, for a “caste-less, pro-work government”.
“The JD(U)-led government in Bihar has indulged in caste-based politics. Nitish has created a Mahadalit category and then excluded the Paswans out of it just because a prominent leader belong to it.
“Our party credo is to offer a caste-less, class-less, society where growth and development will be our priority and not caste politics,” Mr. Chirag said.