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Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) chief Lalu Prasad Yadav on Tuesday accused Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar of conspiring to create a split in his party after reports about 13 of his 22 MLAs switching sides to the ruling Janata Dal (United) in the state came out on Monday.
The drama of the defecting MLAs unfolded as 13 of the RJD's 22 members announced that they were leaving the party. Later, Lalu Prasad walked to the Bihar assembly with nine of the 13 MLAs to show they were still with the party.
"The Nitish Kumar government is killing democracy. It is breaking parties in Bihar. He gave bribes of crores of rupees," Lalu had alleged. He also said "Nitish Kumar is eyeing RJD legislators and offering them lucrative posts to split the party."
HT had asked for readers' opinion on Lalu's allegations on Nitish Kumar. In a poll put out on Tuesday, HT had queried, "Do you think Bihar CM Nitish Kumar is behind the split in RJD, as claimed by its chief Lalu Prasad?"
74% of the voters agreed with Lalu's allegations and answered in the positive. While 20% answered "No, he isn't", 6% didn't have an opinion on the issue.