Seat pact with BJP fi­nalised, says Ni­tish

‘Re­spectable Agree­ment Reached’

The Times of India (Mumbai edition) - - TIMES NATION - Madan.Ku­mar@ times­group.com

Patna: Putting a lid on spec­u­la­tion over which way JD(U) would go in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls, Bi­har chief min­is­ter Ni­tish Ku­mar on Sun­day told the party’s state ex­ec­u­tive mem­bers that a “sam­man­janak samjhauta” (re­spectable agree­ment) has been reached with BJP on seat-shar­ing for the polls.

“Two rounds of talks (on seat-shar­ing) with BJP chief Amit Shah have been held. I have fi­nalised seat-shar­ing with him. I can as­sure you that we have got a re­spectable share. But, I can­not re­veal the num­ber of seats at this mo­ment be­cause we have re­solved to an­nounce the de­tails to­gether. I have not re­vealed the num­ber of seats even to peo­ple around me,” sources quot­ing the Bi­har CM at the JD(U) meet told TOI.

Ni­tish’s as­sur­ance to party work­ers comes amid ap­pre­hen­sion in JD(U) cir­cles that BJP might be averse to leav­ing many of the seats it won in 2014 when his party fin­ished with just 2 seats. On Au­gust 30, BJP had un­of­fi­cially pro­posed a ‘2020 for­mula’ to its NDA al­lies for 40 LS seats in Bi­har. BJP wanted half of these seats while leav­ing12 for JD(U), six for Ram Vi­las Paswan’s LJP and two for Upen­dra Kush­waha’s RLSP. JD (U) had ex­pressed its un­hap­pi­ness over this di­vi­sion of seats.

Ni­tish told JD(U) spokes- per­sons present at the meet­ing “not to speak any­thing about seat-shar­ing” in the me­dia, a se­nior leader told TOI. Ni­tish said JD(U)’s strength in the Lok Sabha would def­i­nitely in­crease af­ter the 2019 polls.

Ni­tish also an­nounced at the meet­ing that he would ex­pand his cab­i­net af­ter a month. As per rules, Bi­har can have 35 cab­i­net min­is­ters. Seven of these posts are va­cant. He also said the va­cant posts in boards and cor­po­ra­tions would be filled up in the com­ing months.

The closed-door meet­ing was held for nearly four hours. Apart from se­nior lead­ers, Prashant Kishor, who for­mally joined the party on Sun­day, also at­tended the meet­ing.

Bi­har CM and JD(U) pres­i­dent Ni­tish Ku­mar pre­sent­ing the party’s membership re­ceipt to Prashant Kishor (left) in Patna on Sun­day

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from India

© PressReader. All rights reserved.