| RJD MLAs and JDU leaders in finance minister Bijendra Prasad Yadav’s chamber in the Assembly on Thursday. Picture by Deepak Kumar |
Patna, June 19: The JDU and the RJD legislators today warmed up to each other after weeks of a blow hot, blow cold relation between the two parties.
Those who fought on even trivial issues behaved cordially on Thursday during the Rajya Sabha bypoll in the changed political scenario. It was a pleasant show of camaraderie between the bitter foes-turned friends a day after the RJD announced support to the JDU official candidates in the bypoll.
The JDU leaders took special care of the RJD legislators and tried to ensure that they did not face trouble during their stay in the Assembly. Several ministers, including food and consumer protection minister Shyam Rajak and rural works and parliamentary affairs minister Sharavan Kumar, were seen trying to please RJD MLAs.
Around 15 RJD MLAs this morning huddled in the small chamber of Lalit Kumar Yadav (RJD), the chairperson of Lok Seva Samiti, which did not have an air-conditioner. While talking to each other, they wiped sweat off their faces.
Senior Dal leaders, on the other hand, were in the chamber of Shravan. While the voting for the two Rajya Sabha seats were underway, a JDU legislator informed Shravan that the RJD MLAs were in Lalit’s chamber.
Shravan immediately rushed towards his chamber and occupied a chair in the gathering of the RJD legislators. Five minutes into discussions on the bypoll, RJD MLA Abdul Gafoor said: “It’s very hot here.”
As if on cue, Shravan said: “Why don’t you all shift to the chamber of Bijendraji (Bijendra Prasad Yadav, finance and commercial taxes minister)? No one is there and it is air-conditioned.”
Rajak, waiting outside Lalit’s chamber, led the RJD MLAs to Bijendra’s cool air-conditioned room. As Bijendra and senior RJD leader Abdul Bari Siddiqui got busy talking to each other, Assembly employees started serving chilled buttermilk to the RJD MLAs. The refreshments did not stop there. Once the MLAs were done with the drink, they were served refreshment packets consisting of vegetable cutlet, rasgulla, kachauri, laddu and kalakand.
Bijendra then asked the JDU’s Raghopur MLA to check if any RJD MLA was still in Lalit’s chamber. The legislator found nobody there.
JDU ministers Jai Kumar Singh and Ranju Geeta helped the RJD MLAs cast their votes.
Around 1.30pm, food packets were distributed among all the ruling lawmakers. The 21 RJD MLAs, too, were served the same lunch.
Seeing the behaviour of the Dal leaders, RJD MLA Lalit said: “I hope the treat won’t be limited to a single day. We wish it continues in the future as well.”