Senior Bihar BJP leader Sushil Kumar Modi on Friday claimed that the Janata Dal (United) decided not to contest the upcoming Uttar Pradesh assembly elections apparently under pressure from the RJD.
“The JD(U) beat a hasty retreat from its earlier decision to contest the Assembly polls in Uttar Pradesh, apparently after the RJD supremo (Lalu Prasad) threatened to review his party’s role in the ruling grand alliance,” he said in a statement.
“JD-U will not contest in Uttar Pradesh to ensure the defeat of communal forces by minimising the chances of split in secular votes,” party national spokesperson KC Tyagi had told the media in Patna on January 25.
Modi said JD(U)’s decision to withdraw from the electoral battleground in Uttar Pradesh was also reflective of the fact that the party had no mass base in the neighbouring state, despite Kumar holding numerous public meetings there to promote prohibition.
“Kumar, who is also the JD(U) national president, may claim that his party has expanded base in other states, but the fact of the matter is that nobody wants to align with it in Uttar Pradesh, including the regional parties like the RLD,” the BJP leader said.
Modi said the JD(U) had contested 225 seats in the 2012 Assembly polls in Uttar Pradesh, but drew a blank with all its candidates losing their deposits.