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Bihar leaders hit campaign trail

The uncertain fate of the petitions pending before the Supreme Court challenging the dissolution of the Assembly has not shackled the key players.

india Updated: Oct 08, 2005 02:37 IST

The clouds of uncertainty over Bihar Assembly elections have made leaders of the major contenders to power -- the NDA, the RJD and the LJP -- plunge headlong into electioneering though the anti-NDA coalitions are still nebulous.

The uncertain fate of the petitions pending before the Supreme Court challenging the dissolution of the Assembly has not shackled the key players in the electoral arena who have launched a string of yatras to mobilise voters.

The battle for Bihar has already begun, much before the election process formally gets underway with the issue of notification on September 23 for the first phase of poll to be held on October 18.

The NDA, led by JD(U)’s Nitish Kumar, which failed to have a shot at power after the February Assembly elections, was first off the starting blocks.

The alliance constituents—the JD(U) and the BJP—who fought the last polls in complete alliance together winning 92 of the 243 seats in the state Assembly, launched their Nyay Yatra in July, two months before fresh elections were announced.

LJP leader Ram Vilas Paswan, dubbed as villain of the piece for his role in thwarting government formation, which ultimately led to the dissolution of the House, has hit the campaign trail with a vengeance defying a heart ailment, which confined him to bed after the last polls.

Despite being jettisoned by the Congress, which has made its preference for the RJD clear, Paswan remains unruffled and is busy with the task of cobbling together a third front with the Left parties and holding a series of public meetings during his party's Sadbhavna Yatra.

First Published: Oct 05, 2005 13:52 IST