A state parliamentary board meeting of the Lok Janshakti Party (LJP) on Monday, 7 September, was held in which the party passed a resolution that all decisions regarding the alliance for Bihar elections have to be taken by the national president Chirag Paswan.
It was also discussed that a list of candidates will be made for 143 Vidhan Sabha seats and sent to central parliamentary board at the earliest.
The meeting was expected to decide on whether the party will remain in the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) for the Bihar Assembly election, or go its separate way.
With just a few weeks left before the elections in Bihar, LJP chief Paswan on Sunday wrote to Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, saying that the government has not fulfilled its promise of giving three decimal land to each Dalit family.
"People are calling me to know if the government's instruction to give jobs to family members of Scheduled Caste people in case of their killing is an election stunt... You have been the CM for (the) last 15 years. Your government should give jobs to family members of all those killed within a month and force speedy trial of pending cases of Dalit atrocities," Paswan was further quoted as saying in his letter.
While LJP is said to have no issues with its alliance with the BJP at the Centre, fissures have come up at the state-level, with Chirag Paswan having been critical of Nitish Kumar multiple times, and seat-sharing also a consideration.
Currently, the LJP only has two seats in the 243-member Assembly. According to a report, it is vying to contest in 36 seats in the upcoming election.
The HAM Factor
Notably, the meeting on Monday also comes days after former Bihar CM Jitan Ram Manjhi's Hindustani Awam Morcha (Secular) (HAM-S) joined the National Democratic Alliance after leaving the mahagathbandhan.
“We have forged an alliance with Janata Dal (United) and have become a part of the National Democratic Alliance (NDA). There has been no discussion about seat-sharing in the next Bihar Assembly elections,” Manjhi had said on 2 September.