July 09, 2020

Cracks appear in Bihar NDA as Jitan Ram Manjhi quits alliance, to join Mahagathbandhan

Former Bihar Chief Minister and Hindustani Awam Morcha head Jitan Ram Manjhi today quit the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) to join Bihar’s ‘mahagathbandhan’.

The official announcement of Manjhi’s HAM joining the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD)-Congress ‘grand’ alliance is likely to be announced tomorrow.

RJD leader and former deputy CM Tejashwi Yadav said, “He [Manjhi] has been an old friend to my parents. We welcome him.”

The move comes in the backdrop of the bypolls scheduled to be held to one Lok Sabha (Araria) and two Assembly seats (Jehanabad and Bhabhua) on March 11.

Earlier this month, the ruling Janata Dal (United) in Bihar had announced that it would not field its candidates from any of the three seats where bypolls are scheduled to be held.

The announcement raised the hopes of smaller parties in the state like HAM. However, JD (U) later reversed its decision and decided to contest the Jehanabad seat. BJP will put up candidates for Araria and Bhabhua seats.

Manjhi’s move reflects how equations will play out ahead of the Lok Sabha polls in 2019.

Political observers in Bihar feel that in the 2019 elections the NDA may parcel out more seats to the bigger partners,. JD (U) and BJP.

By aligning with RJD-Congress combine, Manjhi may be eyeing a larger share of seats.

Courtesy: India Today

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