Speaking exclusively to Republic Media Network’s Editor-in-Chief Arnab Goswami on Tuesday, JDU General Secretary Pavan Varma slammed BJP for its approach towards allies. Maintaining that JDU had always been the senior party in the coalition in Bihar, he backed the demand for the seat-sharing in the upcoming Bihar Assembly elections to be based on the winnability in the previous elections. Incidentally, it was JDU Vice President Prashant Kishor who had first raised this demand.
To buttress his point about BJP’s deteriorating relations with its alliance partners, Varma cited Shiv Sena’s decision to form the government with arch-rivals NCP and Congress. Moreover, he highlighted that the Shiromani Akali Dal had refused to contest the Delhi polls due to a disagreement with BJP over the Citizenship Amendment Act. Thereafter, the former diplomat reiterated that there was nothing wrong in seeking ideological clarity from his own party.
Pavan Varma said, “If this is their (BJP’s) approach that it is the great saviour of JDU, actually the JDU has been the senior partner of BJP in Bihar always. And that is the claim that has also been advanced recently that in the elections that are forthcoming now, the seat adjustment should also be on the basis of the 2010 and 2015 winnability of seats. But the BJP believes that it is the larger party because it is the larger party and has little time for alliance parties."
He added, “And that is why you have seen the situation with the Shiv Sena. You have seen what the Akali Dal has done. And now if the JDU wishes to further expand its alliance with the BJP, then all I am asking the leadership to do- in the light of all these factors including the position of the party and the views of the leader to kindly project an ideological clarity because parties don’t take ad-hoc decisions which are devoid of any ideology or principles behind them. It’s a very valid demand to ask from a responsible political party which says that its entire politics is ideology-based.”
Earlier in the day, Varma wrote a letter to Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar. In the letter, he claimed that Kumar’s private views about BJP were less than favourable. Surprised at the decision of his party to extend the BJP alliance beyond Bihar, he urged Kumar to provide clarity on the party’s ideological agenda at a juncture when there were mixed views about the CAA and the National Register of Citizens.
Pavan K. Varma, National Gen Secy of Janata Dal (United): I've written to CM Nitish Kumar today asking him how JD(U) has formed an alliance with BJP for #DelhiElections, given his own views on BJP&the massive national outrage against divisive CAA,NPR&NRC scheme pic.twitter.com/RwTb6BTYHa— ANI (@ANI) January 21, 2020