Sharad Yadav elected JD (U) chief
Sharad Yadav was on Tuesday elected president of Janata Dal (U) defeating incumbent George Fernandes in a poll marred by controversy.india Updated: Apr 11, 2006 22:51 IST
Sharad Yadav was on Tuesday elected president of Janata Dal (U) defeating incumbent George Fernandes in a poll marred by controversy following last-minute removal of the returning officer and boycott by Fernandes and state units of the party loyal to him.
Yadav, the party's central parliamentary board chairman, secured 413 votes against Fernandes' 25 as ten votes were declared invalid and 123 registered voters did not exercise their franchise, Subhash Srivastava, the returning officer, announced amidst jubilation by Yadav's supporters.
Srivastava was appointed returning officer after Fernandes loyalist Aneel Hedge was removed by the national executive minutes before national council members began voting to elect a new president.
The contest took place after all attempts by senior party leaders, including Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, who backed Yadav, to bring about a rapprochement between the two party stalwarts came a cropper.
Though Fernandes, who arrived in Patna from New Delhi on Tuesday morning, met Kumar at his official residence for a couple of hours, a compromise could not be reached.
Yadav, according to insiders, insisted on holding the election refusing even to meet Fernandes at Kumar's residence and left for his hotel minutes before Fernandes arrived for the meeting.
He rejected outright an offer mooted by the Fernandes camp to allow the veteran leader to get re-elected as a 'face-saver' before resigning a couple of months later on health grounds.
First Published: Apr 11, 2006 20:40 IST