The Bihar BJP in-charge, Dharmendra Pradhan, on Monday launched a frontal attack on RJD chief Lalu Prasad and chief minister Nitish Kumar, charging them with working in unison to stop Narendra Modi from becoming the Prime Minister.
Asking the two leaders to clear their stand on whether they would back Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi for the post of Prime Minister, Rajya Sabha MP Pradhan said the 2014 elections in Bihar was witnessing a strange secret alliance between the RJD and the JD(U). They were indulging in shadow boxing with the sole aim to stop Modi, he said.
Pradhan said: “The secret alliance between the RJD and the JD(U) to stop Modi from becoming the Prime Minister stands exposed after the JD(U) candidate for the Kishanganj Lok Sabha seat, Akhtarul Iman, withdrew from the contest, leaving the party red-faced.”
He said Iman’s withdrawal on the plea of saving the split in the Muslim votes had a sent strong message to Muslim voters not only in Kishanganj but in other constituencies too. “Despite facing a humiliating situation, the JD(U) has not taken any strong action against Iman,” Pradhan said.
Iterating the words of the BJP’s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi, Pradhan said: “Our poll plank is ‘India First’ because we want to fight inflation, poverty and corruption. The Congress and the other parties’ issue is ‘Modi First’. Their sole aim is to stop him.”
The BJP leader said the Congress had virtually accepted defeat in the elections and had started talking about supporting the imaginary third front over the past week. The leaders of the so-called third front too have talked about extending support to the Congress to stop Modi, he said.
Pradhan’s statement assumes importance because both Maharasthra chief minister Prithviraj Chavan and Union external affairs minister Salman Khurshid had hinted at a possible post-poll alliance when they said the Congress party could seek the support of the third front if required. Welcoming the Congress leaders’ stand, Uttar Pradesh chief minister Akhilesh Yadav asked the Congress to help the third front form the government at the Centre after polls if it really wanted to stop the BJP.
The BJP leader stated that the statement of the Congress leaders and Akhilesh were confusing the voters because the third front shaped up in different names in the past but was never successful in giving a stable government.