The Bharatiya Janata Party and Lok Janshakti Party have reached a consensus over seat- sharing formula for Lok Sabha elections in Bihar, media reports said on Friday. As per the reports, a decision on the seat-sharing has been taken in the meeting between LJP president Ram Vilas Paswan and senior BJP leader Arun Jaitley. The decision is likely to be announced tomorrow. Speaking to news agency PTI, a Lok Janshakti Party leader said that talks have been positive. “If all goes well, we will contest six of the 40 Lok Sabha seats in Bihar,” he said.
There has been speculation that the BJP may have offered LJP 5 Lok Sabha seats and 1 Rajya Sabha seat. On the other hand, if the LJP is given six seats which it won last elections, then the BJP and its another ally Janata Dal (United), which is headed by Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, will contest 17 seats each. Earlier, Shah had announced that BJP and JD(U) will be contesting on the equal number of seats in the politically crucial state where the BJP-led NDA had won 31 seats in 2014.
The development comes days after LJP’s parliamentary board chairman had expressed disappointment over the delay in seat sharing settlement in Bihar NDA. Taking to Twitter, Paswan had said that NDA is passing through “trying times” after the exit of the TDP and the RLSP, and the BJP’s failure to address concerns of coalition partners in a “timely” manner could be “damaging”.
Chirag had expressed disappointment over “no headway” despite “a number of meetings with the BJP leadership” over the issue of seat-sharing in Bihar.
“Following the exit of the TDP and the RLSP, the NDA is passing through trying times. In view of this, it is imperative that the BJP addresses the concerns of those still in the alliance in a timely and respectable manner,” Chirag had tweeted. “No headway has been made on seat-sharing despite a number of meetings with leaders of the BJP. If things are not settled in time, it could prove to be damaging”, the LJP leader said.
On Thursday, former Union minister Upendra Kushwaha’s Rashtriya Lok Samata Party (RLSP) joined Bihar UPA in presence of Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD), Congress and Hindustani Awam Morcha (Secular) in a meeting in New Delhi.