New Delhi, Aug. 12: The Janata Dal United today moved to remove its founder-member Sharad Yadav as its leader in the Rajya Sabha in the wake of his open hob-nobbing with Lalu Prasad's Rashtriya Janata Dal and other Opposition parties.
R.C.P. Singh, a confidant of Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar, is to be the new leader.
The move will become official once Nitish as JDU president sends a formal letter to the Rajya Sabha chairman informing him about the change.
A delegation of JDU MPs met Rajya Sabha chairman M. Venkaiah Naidu today and submitted a letter informing them about the change which, if effected, will push Sharad from the front row vantage point he has had in the House to the back rows.
Usually the change becomes official once the president of the party concerned sends a letter informing the House about it. An application made by MPs alone may not suffice.
JDU spokesman K.C. Tyagi told The Telegraph: "As of now, MPs have submitted a letter, if needed, Nitish ji will send the letter."
However, Tyagi - while interacting with reporters earlier in the day - insisted that the party had not closed its doors to "Sharad ji" and has invited him to the JDU's national executive meeting in Patna on August 19. This courtesy has not been extended to Ali Anwar, another Rajya Sabha MP, who stands suspended for attending the meeting of Opposition parties convened by Congress president Sonia Gandhi on Friday.
Tyagi also sought to remind Sharad that socialists have always been opposed to corruption and dynastic politics which "Lalu Prasad epitomises".
Conceding that it is possible that Sharad may be upset with Nitish for his decision to tie up with the BJP, Tyagi added that "he could have raised his objections in the party forum instead of airing them in the open".
Sharad, who is touring Bihar to take his message to the people on how Nitish "betrayed the mandate", today addressed road-side meetings in Madhepura, his former Lok Sabha constituency.