NDA allies in Bihar will cease to be politically-relevant: Congress
Parties like Nitish Kumar's JD(U) and Ram Vilas Paswan's LJP will cease to be politically relevant in Bihar if they stay in alliance with BJP, Congress leader in-charge of the state Shaktisinh Gohil said. He said "winnability" will be the main criteria for seat sharing among 'grand alliance' parties in Bihar. Gohil, also a party spokesperson, said there's "discontent" among backward classes in Bihar.
I don't think these parties will stay with NDA: Gohil
Gohil said that in Bihar, NDA constituents Janata Dal (United), Lok Janshakti Party (LJP), and Upendra Kushwaha's Rashtriya Lok Samta Party (RLSP) which primarily draw their support from backward classes would quit the alliance before Lok Sabha polls. "I don't think these parties will stay with the NDA. If they stay...BJP will just lose, but they will cease to be politically relevant," he said.
The message is loud and clear, says Congress leader
"There is a loud and clear message...the central government under Prime Minister Narendra Modi is against the SCs, STs, backward and most backward classes. Those in alliance with the BJP...seek support of people belonging to these sections...how will they stay with the BJP?" Gohil asked.
Leader says NDA committed a sin by diluting SC/ST Act
Gohil said the best law for the SCs/STs, the SC/ST Prevention of Atrocities Act, was brought by former PM Rajiv Gandhi and NDA government committed the "sin" of diluting it. So, NDA alliance partners have to get out of it. When asked whether the opposition's doors are open for Kumar, Paswan, and Kushwaha, Gohil said he will react only when such a situation arises.
NDA wants to reach out to Dalits, but it's late
A bill to overturn the SC order, which laid down certain safeguards in the SC/ST law, was introduced in the Lok Sabha; it's being seen as NDA government's move to reach out to Dalits. Gohil said the tabling of the bill was a late move as BJP was under pressure from some allies and MPs. He said there was still "discontent" among backward classes.
LJP, Kushwaha expressed concerns over SC/ST issues
LJP and Kushwaha earlier made statements expressing their concerns over SC/ST issues related seemed to be on a collision course with the government. However, LJP has since softened its stand following the tabling of the bill.
Gohil on 'Mahagathbandhan' and seat sharing with parties
"Congress has always done ideology-based politics and not indulged in 'power politics' like the BJP. We will have no difficulty in seat sharing with these parties (RJD, NCP, HAM, Left, etc.)," Gohil said. He added any party with the same ideology can join "Mahagathbandhan". On CM Nitish, he said, "He is now with BJP. Ideologically, they are east and west...people of Bihar are suffering."
Opposition unity is what Bihar people demand: Gohil
"People are feeling cheated. They want the opposition to be united... (and) the jumla government to go. Our unity in Bihar will show the way in other places. BJP is always on the lookout to finish allies and become strong at their expense," Gohil said.