JD(U) MPs resign today over MNS row

Written by Political Bureau | New Delhi, Nov 6 | Updated: Nov 7 2008, 05:58am hrs
The tussle between RJD chief Lalu Prasad and Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar to project themselves as the custodians of Biharis got intense on Thursday with the JD (U) announcing that its five Lok Sabha MPs would step down on Friday to protest against the attacks on north Indians in Maharashtra.

The party MPs will submit their resignation to Lok Sabha Speaker Somnath Chatterjee on Friday morning, party parliamentary leader and MP Prabhunath Singh said. The announcement clearly has been made to stymie Prasads intent to pressurise the Centre with his move to call for resignations of party MPs and MLAs by November 15. An RJD spokesperson on Tuesday had said almost 75% of resignations had been collected so far.

The JD(U) leader said there was no option left before his party but asking its MPs in the Lower House to put in their papers as the Maharashtra government was patronising those involved in hate attacks and the Central government was silent over the issue. The decision was taken as no action was taken against the culprits even after an all-party delegation of Bihar MPs met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh a few days back, Singh said.

The game of one-upmanship between the JD(U) as well as the RJD, however, has elicited adverse reactions from the NCP, an alliance partner of the RJD in the UPA and the Shiv Sena, an alliance partner of the JD(U) in the NDA.

The NCP on Thursday cautioned parties not to make political capital out of the stray anti-north Indian stir in Maharashtra and asked them to desist from unnecessarily humiliating the accommodative culture of the state.