Weeks after the Aam Aadmi Party swept to power in Delhi on a pro-common man agenda, former chief minister Jitan Ram Manjhi vowed to follow Arvind Kejriwal’s model in Bihar by announcing a new front christened Hindustani Awami Morcha (HAM).
“We are now HAM, which means we are united. It will be bigger than AAP,” Manjhi said.
The congregation made up of JD(U) dissidents and supporters was a show of strength by those opposed to chief minister Nitish Kumar and RJD chief Lalu Prasad.
Manjhi refuted speculations that he was about to ally with the BJP. “Yes, I met the Prime Minister for Bihar’s development; so has Nitish Kumar. Why is nobody questioning him?” he asked.
The front is seen as an attempt at the political awakening of Dalits as a unified pressure group of 22%, which could transcend caste barriers to emerge as a vital force.
The meet witnessed an all-out attack on Nitish, with leaders calling him “power hungry”.
Incidentally, the group called itself ‘ a part of the JD(U)’ and described the meet as a ‘party Karyakarta Sammellan (workers’ meeting).’
“Let us wait for the merger of JD(U) and RJD. If that happens, we will be the main JD(U),” Manjhi said, adding he could announce a new party by April 17-18 at a rally in Gandhi Maidan.