DAINIK NATION BUREAU
Union minister Upendra Kushwaha said today that he would not participate in a meeting of the ruling BJP and its allies in Delhi, reinforcing endless speculation that he is on the verge of quitting the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) coalition anytime now. Reports say Upendra Kushwaha may announce his exit from the BJP-led alliance in the afternoon, triggering realignment in Bihar and delivering a blow to the NDA a day before the winter session of parliament begins.
“Kushwaha is likely to announce his parting of ways with the BJP today. He will also quit as a Union minister,” a senior RLSP leader said. Mr Kushwaha is the Minister of State for Human Resource Development at the centre.
But the chief of the RLSP (Rashtriya Lok Samata Party) is set to walk out minus his two state lawmakers or one parliamentarian Arun Kumar, who had floated his own party earlier.
Upendra Kushwaha has been upset over seat-sharing for the 2019 national polls, in which Nitish Kumar seems to have struck a better deal than other allies in Bihar.
The message for Mr Kushwaha was that he would not be given more than two seats to contest in the Lok Sabha election. Bihar sends 40 MPs to the Lok Sabha.
The RLSP is expected to join hands with the opposition, which includes Lalu Prasad’s RJD and the Congress.
Sharad Yadav, Nitish Kumar’s arch rival who quit his Janata Dal United last year, is believed to be ready to merge his party with Mr Kushwaha’s, so together they can have a better share of seats in an opposition alliance. WITH INPUT OF NDTV