POLITICS

Lalu Calls For A 'Grand Alliance' To Take On BJP In 2019 Elections

"BJP and RSS are trying to divide India in the name of mandir, gau, kabristan and samshan."

03/05/2017 9:55 AM IST | Updated 03/05/2017 10:04 AM IST
Hindustan Times via Getty Images

RAJGIRI, Bihar -- RJD president Lalu Prasad Yadav on Tuesday appealed to the non-BJP parties to "sink their differences" and come together like the Grand Alliance in Bihar to defeat the saffron party in the next Lok Sabha polls.

"I had a very serious fight with Nitish Kumar. But, to stop the surge of the BJP, we sank our differences and forged an alliance to defeat it in the 2015 Bihar polls," he said.

"Every party opposed to the BJP should sink its differences and come together to defeat it in the 2019 parliamentary election," Yadav said after inaugurating a two-day training camp of the RJD here.

He said "positive talks" have been held with Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee, Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav and BSP supremo Mayawati to forge the alliance.

JD(U) chief Nitish Kumar had met Congress president Sonia Gandhi recently to give pace to the process of forging an alliance among the non-BJP parties.

Yadav slammed the BJP and the RSS for "trying to divide the society in the name of mandir (temple), gau (cow), Kabristan (graveyard) and samshan (crematorium)."

Alleging that the situation in Jammu and Kashmir has been "the worst" under the NDA government at the Centre, Yadav lamented the killing of army jawans by Pakistan and mockingly asked, "Where is the 56 inch chest?" (referring to Prime Minister Narendra Modi).

Calling upon the RJD workers to gear up for the 2019 Lok Sabha election, he asked them to avoid making unnecessary statements which create confusion.

Yadav also sought to downplay reports of differences between the RJD and the JD(U) surfacing from time to time triggered by statements of some leaders from both sides and said the Grand Alliance is "united" in Bihar.

The choice of venue for the RJD's training camp at Rajgir is significant as it is in Kumar's home district of Nalanda.

Deputy Chief Minister Tejaswi Yadav, RJD's Rajya Sabha member Misa Bharti, senior leaders and ministers like Abdul Bari Siddiqui, Alok Mehta, Shiv Chander Ram, state party chief Ramchandra Purbe, senior leader Jagdanand Singh and party national spokesman Manoj Jha were present at the training camp.

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