Patna, June 9: The Janata Dal (United) will restrict its alliance with the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) only till Bihar, decided the National Executive of the Nitish Kumar-led party at its meeting in Patna on Sunday. The announcement comes amid reports of differences between the JD(U) and the BJP on a range of national issues.
Simmerings were noticed in the NDA camp in Bihar after the JD(U) turned down Prime Minister Narendra Modi's offer to accept one ministerial position in his government. Bihar Cabinet Expansion: Eight JD(U) Leaders Take Oath, Nitish Kumar Leaves BJP Out
The party was disappointed that despite winning 16 constituencies, it was being awarded only one seat in the Cabinet -- same as what the BJP has offered to its smaller allies - Lok Janshakti Party, Apna Dal and Shiromani Akali Dal.
In the days to follow, the JD(U) marked its dissent after BJP's Bihar veteran and lawmaker Giriraj Singh took a swipe at Chief Minister Nitish Kumar for attending an iftar party. The Begusarai MP said he wished if the "secular leaders" had shown a similar in attending Navratri events.
Update by ANI:
Janata Dal United (JDU) will not be a part of National Democratic Alliance (NDA) outside the state of Bihar. JDU will fight the upcoming elections alone in J&K, Jharkhand, Haryana & Delhi. The decision has been taken in the party's National Executive Meet today. pic.twitter.com/LfwMgZs2l3
— ANI (@ANI) June 9, 2019
Though Nitish had brushed aside the jibe by calling Giriraj a publicity-seeker, his criticism has once again shifted attention on the issues citing which Nitish had last broke up with the NDA in 2013.
JD(U)'s senior leader and spokesperson KC Tyagi, while speaking to reporters last week, said that socialism and secularism remain an unwavering agenda of Nitish Kumar.
Despite being part of the NDA, the JD(U) has not support the BJP on a number of contentious issues. This includes the demand for Ram Mandir in Ayodhya, scrapping of Article 370 and 35-A and imposition of uniform civil code.