PATNA: RJD chief Lalu Prasad, on Thursday, underscored the need for “protecting and continuing with the grand alliance among the RJD, JD (U) and Congress in Bihar till the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, at any cost”.
“The preparations for the 2019 general elections will start next year and Bihar’s ruling grand alliance needs to continue till the Lok Sabha elections,” Prasad said.
In this context, the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) chief also mentioned the Samajwadi Party-Congress alliance in the just concluded Uttar Pradesh assembly polls.
“The formation of a new government lead by (Samajwadi Party president and incumbent chief minister) Akhilesh Yadav only a matter of time,” he said.
Prasad was addressing a function organised here to celebrate the 97th birth anniversary of the late Congress leader Ram Lakhan Singh Yadav.
The RJD chief also recalled how, after the formation of the grand alliance government in Bihar, a number of people had predicted that it would have a “limited lifespan”.
“They said Lalu Prasad and (chief minister) Nitish Kumar will just not be able to work together for long. But we have proved them wrong. If we can give the same message together in the coming days, no force will be able to stand in front of us,” he said.
Speaking on the occasion, chief minister Nitish Kumar, in a subtle jibe at the Congress, said: “The party, which Ram Lakhan Singh Yadav belonged to, could not do justice to him and failed to make full use of his charisma in the later part of his political life.”
Although Ram Lakhan Singh Yadav was a Congress man, he later joined Janata Dal and was elected to the Lok Sabha as its candidate from Ara in 1991. He, however, returned to the Congress later and also became the minister of chemicals & fertilisers in the Narasimha Rao-led Congress government (1991-96).
STRAP ‘If we can give the same (unity) message in the coming days also, no force will be able to stand in front of us’
Any move to abolish quota will be opposed: Nitish
PATNA: Chief minister Nitish Kumar, who was present at the birth anniversary function of Ram Lakhan Singh Yadav, a veteran leader of backward classes, took the opportunity to lambast the Union government over widespread speculations that the current NDA government at the Centre might do away with the quota system in government services and admission to educational institutions.
Sitting alongside his predecessor Lalu Prasad, a champion of quota politics in India, Kumar vowed to oppose any move to abolish quota.
Speaking on the occasion, the chief minister also emphasised that the main focus of the current state government is rural and agriculture development.
“Almost 76% of the total population of Bihar is dependent on agriculture for their livelihood, and hence, without focus on development of this sector, the overall development of the state is not possible. Our government is concentrating on this aspect only,” he said.