After renewing the call, last month, for an alliance with the Congress for the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, the Rashtriya Janata Dal and the Lok Jan Shakti Party, which are allies in Bihar, are keeping their fingers crossed.
“There is no progress on alliance talks after my meeting with [Congress president] Sonia Gandhi. There is no impasse [either]. All parties are busy with the five State [Assembly] elections,” LJP leader Ram Vilas Paswan told a press meet here on Friday. He said the RJD and LJP’s wish to tie up with the Congress was “an open secret.” He ruled out his party being part of any third front.
Mr. Paswan said the LJP would go it alone Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Mizoram, Rajasthan and Delhi.
Asked about media reports on the RJD reviewing its alliances in Bihar, the former Bihar Chief Minister Rabri Devi said the party was still in alliance with the LJP.
“The LJP is our partner. As for other alliances we will take a call in due time. We have already said we want all secular parties to come together,” she told The Hindu, adding the statement made by senior RJD leader Raghuvansh Prasad Singh that the party would contest all 40 Lok Sabha seats in Bihar “is not correct.”
From Monday, Ms. Rabri Devi would address a series of rallies in the State, her first public address after the imprisonment of her husband and RJD supremo, Lalu Prasad, in a fodder scam case.
For its part, the LJP would begin its ‘Bihar bachao yatra’ on November 24 on the issues of youth, communal harmony and development. The yatra would be led by Mr. Paswan’s son, Chirag.
Mr. Paswan said politics in the State had now been reduced to vitriolic exchanges between the ruling Janata Dal (United) and the Bharatiya Janata Party. “[Chief Minister] Nitish Kumar no longer talks of development or good governance. He has suddenly gone silent even on the issue of special status for Bihar.”