The Bharatiya Janata Party will launch its Jharkhand campaign jointly with the Janata Dal (United) simultaneously from several places in the State on November 21.

However, although a number of rallies will be jointly addressed by senior leaders of the BJP and the JD(U) — L.K. Advani, Rajnath Singh, Sharad Yadav and Nitish Kumar — the two parties plan to bring out separate manifestos, BJP leader Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said here on Saturday.

He was confident that the alliance would not only emerge as the single largest pre-poll coalition but would also get a majority on its own. Afterwards the two parties would work out a common agenda for governance.

In the 2005 Assembly election, the BJP had won 30 seats polling 24 per cent of the total votes polled while its partner, the JD(U) won 6 seats getting 4 per cent of the popular vote. “The coalition is confident it has a larger voter support base to begin with than any other party or group of parties fighting this election.”

Coupled with the scandal that the former Chief Minister Madhu Koda is currently embroiled in, the BJP feels that it has more than an outside chance to make it. Mr. Naqvi said the Koda affair once again highlighted the “sponsorship of corruption by the Congress party.”

The issues that the alliance wants to focus on are rising prices of essential food items, unemployment, corruption and the “loot” of the State over the last several years and the “general political situation,” including the neglect of the tribal population.

The five-phase election in the State will give the BJP-JD(U) enough time to hold over 30 rallies and many election meetings to be addressed by other Central leaders, Chief Ministers and other senior party leaders.

The tribal and the non-tribal faces of the party’s campaign will be the former Chief Minister, Arjun Munda, and the former External Affairs Minister and Hazaribagh MP, Yashwant Sinha.

This time the BJP has decided not to project a chief ministerial candidate.

Alliance to focus on price rise, unemployment, corruption

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