New Delhi | Janata Dal United JD(U) and Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD) are exploring the possibility of an umbrella alliance with Congress and some smaller parties in Uttar Pradesh for the 2017 Assembly elections after the JD(U)-RJD-Congress coalition inflicted a humiliating defeat on BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) in the Bihar polls. Sources said RLD chief Ajit Singh had a meeting with JD(U) President Sharad Yadav a couple of days back during which the two leaders discussed the broad contours of a larger coalition against the BJP at a time when both SP and BSP, the two major parties in the state, have ruled out forging any alliance.
The RLD chief had also discussed the issue with Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar in Delhi last month when the latter was here for the launch of Yadav’s autobiography. Peace Party chief Ayub Ansari had also met Nitish Kumar and JD(U) general secretary K C Tyagi to discuss the issue, sources said. Peace Party has its presence in Eastern UP, mainly in areas around Gorakhpur. Some clarity on such an alliance is likely to emerge in a day or two after JD(U)’s state executive meeting in Lucknow today, they said.
Tyagi, a senior party leader from Uttar Pradesh who has been assigned the task of organizing a joint rally of the RLD and JD(U) in western Uttar Pradesh said, We are keen to be part of any anti-BJP campaign or front. In any such campaign in western Uttar Pradesh, RLD is an important element. Any grand alliance minus RLD will not be successful in Western UP, he said. When asked whether the party is in talks with RLD on the issue of an alliance in Uttar Pradesh, Tyagi said, We keep talking to RLD leaders. Nitishji and Sharadji have spoken to the RLD leadership. Sources in JD(U) said the party was also keen on forging an alliance with Congress in Assam, but the latter’s state unit was not inclined.
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