SP shuts door on grand alliance, to go solo in Bihar elections

September 08, 2015 12:00 am | Updated March 28, 2016 04:26 pm IST - Patna:

Suspense over Samajwadi Party remaining in the nascent anti-BJP grand alliance for the coming Bihar Assembly polls ended on Monday with the party deciding to fight the elections on its own and blamed Chief Minister Nitish Kumar for a “tilt” towards Congress.

Announcing this here, Bihar SP president Ramchandra Singh Yadav said the party will contest all 243 seats alone in the upcoming polls.

“SP chief Mulayam Singh, listening to sentiments of workers, went by the decision of the party’s Parliamentary Board to end ties with secular alliance of JD (U), RJD and Congress, and contest alone in Bihar,” Mr. Yadav told reporters after a meeting of party districts chief here.

He said that with SP walking out, the grand secular alliance in Bihar has virtually come to an end. “Now it will only be ‘lathbandhan’ (clash of lathis) between JD (U) and RJD,” Mr. Yadav said.

Mr. Yadav was not very categorical about chances of tie-up with Left Parties and Sharad Pawar-led NCP.

“There have been some talks with leaders of the two but no conclusive decision has yet been taken,” he said.

Slamming the grand alliance and coming down heavily on the Bihar Chief Minister, he said: “SP chief Mulayam Singh ignored all odds against Mr. Kumar and played a pivotal role in declaring his name as secular alliance’s candidate for chief minister’s post ... Till the name was declared, Mr. Kumar used to chant ‘Mulayam chalisa’ The feelings of the SP workers were hurt after he started with ‘Congress and Sonia chalisa ’,” Mr. Yadav said.

SP’s change of mind follows its participation in the ‘Swabhiman Rally’ here on August 30, which was addressed among others by the Congress president Sonia Gandhi.

The State SP chief did not speak much against RJD and its leader Lalu Prasad, whom he said made efforts to salvage the anti-BJP grouping.

However, he spoke about ‘kushashan’ (misgovernance) in the name of ‘sushashan’ (good governance) under Nitish Kumar and chances of return of jungle raj in the State under the ‘grouping.’

SP which was originally not given any seat to contest on August 11, was given five later - the three rejected by NCP and two from RJD’s quota.

After this Mulayam Singh had sent his younger brother and Uttar Pradesh minister Shivpal Singh Yadav to the Swabhiman Rally.

On Sep 3, SP stormed out of the Alliance, saying it felt “humiliated” at being allotted a paltry five seats.

The decision to walk out of the coalition was taken at a meeting of SP parliamentary board in the presence of party chief Mulayam Singh, who had brokered peace between Nitish Kumar and RJD supremo Lalu Prasad and succeeded in persuading the latter to accept the Bihar Chief Minister as the secular alliance’s chief ministerial candidate.

Ram Gopal Yadav’s announcement was followed by hectic efforts by Sharad Yadav and Lalu Prasad to placate Mulayam Singh.

Both had exuded optimism that Mulayam Singh, who had been declared head of Janata Parivar, will remain with the alliance though there was no word from him or his party.

SP’s decision to walk away from the grand alliance would not have much impact on the electoral prospects of JD (U), RJD and Congress grouping, keeping in view its past performance in Bihar.

But, it could play spoilsport to the anti-BJP front, particularly RJD, by eating into its Muslim-Yadav votes.

SP had contested 146 seats alone in Bihar in 2010 elections, but drew a blank. Poll records reveal that its candidates lost security deposits on majority of the seats in the last poll in the State. PTI

SP blames Chief Minister Nitish Kumar for a “tilt” towards Congress for the break up

The party will now contest all 243 seats alone in the upcoming Assembly polls

Top News Today

Sign in to unlock member-only benefits!
  • Access 10 free stories every month
  • Save stories to read later
  • Access to comment on every story
  • Sign-up/manage your newsletter subscriptions with a single click
  • Get notified by email for early access to discounts & offers on our products
Sign in


Comments have to be in English, and in full sentences. They cannot be abusive or personal. Please abide by our community guidelines for posting your comments.

We have migrated to a new commenting platform. If you are already a registered user of The Hindu and logged in, you may continue to engage with our articles. If you do not have an account please register and login to post comments. Users can access their older comments by logging into their accounts on Vuukle.