Patna, October 3
A multiparty Grand Alliance took shape here ahead of the Bihar assembly polls on Saturday, notwithstanding a minor fissure, with Rashtriya Janata Dal’s Tejashwi Yadav being backed unanimously as the face of the coalition and the party ending up with a lions’ share of the seats.
Announcing the seat-sharing formula in presence of leaders of Congress, CPI (ML), CPI and CPI (M), Yadav said his party will accommodate old alliance partner Vikashheel Insaan Party (VIP) and JMM its ally in adjoining Jharkhand from its quota of 144 seats in the 243-strong assembly.
Among other allies, Congress has been given 70 seats, nearly twice as many as it had contested in the 2015 assembly polls in alliance with the RJD and Chief Minister Nitish Kumars JD(U).
The Congress will also be fielding its candidate in Valmiki Nagar Lok Sabha seat whereby-poll will be held on November 7.
Among the Left parties, the CPI (ML) has been given 19 seats, followed by CPI (6 seats) and CPI (M).
Yadav vowed to dislodge the government headed by Nitish Kumar, whom Congress leader Avinash Pandey in his address accused of “apharan” (hijacking) of the mandate in the previous elections.
The JD (U) chief had fought 2015 elections opposing the BJP led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi but ended up re- aligning with the saffron party, Pandey said.
The disjointed formation, however, continued to be in disarray as VIP president Mukesh Sahni a Bollywood set designer-turned-politician announced soon after the press conference that he was quitting the grand alliance since he did not get “a respectable offer”. PTI
RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav presents party membership slip to Bahujan Samaj Party’s Bihar President Bharat Bind as he joins the RJD in Patna on Saturday. PTI photo