Wednesday, December 6, 2023

Manjhi meets Modi, fuels speculation of tie-up with BJP

New Delhi, May 29 (IANS) Former Bihar chief minister Jitan Ram Manjhi on Thursday called on Prime Minister Narendra Modi, fuelling speculation of a tie-up between his party and the BJP for the upcoming assembly elections in Bihar.

The meeting came days after Bharatiya Janata Party president Amit Shah hinted that options were open for a tie-up with Manji, who heads the Hindustani Awam Morcha (HAM).

BJP sources said the HAM has demanded 50 seats in an alliance and the party has not agreed to the demand.

“Manjhi has demanded 50 seats which the BJP refused politely,” a party leader, who did not want to be named, told IANS.

Manjhi, a critic of Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, has launched the HAM after being expelled from the Janata Dal-United (JD-U).

Manjhi said he met Modi to raise issues concerning farmers in Bihar and demanded an CBI inquiry into alleged irregularities in paddy procurement.

Asked about possibility of an alliance with the BJP, Manjhi said: “If there is a need to ally with any party, I will go with a formation which does not include Nitish Kumar.”

Taking a dig at the RJD and the JD-U alliance, he said a tie-up between Lalu Prasad and Nitish Kumar was unlikely to work as the RJD voters would not support Nitish Kumar while the JD-U leader has a small voter base.

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