New Delhi: The Chirag Paswan faction of the Lok Janshakti Party (LJP) is going to form an alliance with the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD), the main opposition party of Bihar, in the coming months as options for Chirag Paswan had dried up in view of Nitish Kumar making it clear to the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leadership to “either chose the JDU or Chirag Paswan in Bihar”. After that, the Chirag Paswan faction’s state unit in its meeting a few days back had sent a proposal to party chief Chirag Paswan to look for other option for forming a new alliance to contest the upcoming polls effectively meaning to ally with the RJD in the coming Bihar Legislative Council polls to be held in the coming weeks.
A senior party leader who was in the meeting told The Sunday Guardian, “We don’t have any other option. The door of the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) is closed for us. Nitish Kumar broke our party, but the mass support is with Chirag Paswan. We also know that the LJP’s vote bank alone can never win us elections, we would be successful in an alliance only. History has proven it time and again, be it the 2004, 2014 and 2019 Lok Sabha polls. Hence, alliance with the RJD is a good option as both Chirag Paswan and Tejashwi Prasad Yadav are young and Bihar is looking at them. The only confusion is should we ally in the coming Bihar Legislative Council elections or build our own strength and ally in the 2024 Lok Sabha elections,”.
Elections for 24 local body seats of Bihar Legislative Council would be announced anytime soon. Chirag Paswan’s faction of the LJP, presently had no member in the Bihar State Assembly or the Bihar Legislative Council. The lone MLA of the party Raj Kumar Singh who had won the 2020 Bihar Legislative Assembly elections from Matihani assembly seat in Begusarai district, had joined the JDU last year itself. In July this year, the LJP had split into two parts with one faction led by Ramvilas Paswan’s younger brother and Chirag Paswan’s uncle, Pashupati Kumar Paras, rebelling against him while the other faction is led by Chirag Paswan. Last month, the Election Commission of India had recognised the Paras faction of the LJP as the Rashtriya Lok Janshakti Party with “sewing machine” as the party symbol and Chirag Paswan’s faction as the Lok Janshakti Party (Ram Vilas) with “helicopter” as its symbol.
Talking to The Sunday Guardian, Raju Tiwari, LJP (Chirag) state president said, “In a recent meeting of the state parliamentary board we have recommended to our leader Chirag Paswan to contest any upcoming elections in an alliance that includes the Bihar legislative Council polls. But, any decision would be taken by our party’s national president only.”
Both parties confirmed to The Sunday Guardian that the RJD is ready to give seven seats out of 24 Council seats which would go for polls. Many experts believe the Chirag Paswan-Tejashwi Prasad Yadav alliance had the potential to change the political equation in the state. Santosh Kumar Singh, a political analyst who has covered Bihar for more than 20 years, said, “In the state there is an anti-Nitish Kumar sentiment, the people are not against the BJP, but are unhappy with the JDU, they are looking for options. If both these young leaders join hands, it would change the political landscape of the state and things would drastically change. It is also true that Chirag Paswan wants to ally with the BJP, but the saffron party cannot upset Nitish Kumar. Hence, RJD is the best available bet for him.”