The fast-paced developments in Karnataka have stirred the political pot in Bihar, where Opposition RJD today sought an appointment with Governor Satyapal Malik for tomorrow to request it be invited to form the government in the state as the single-largest party, by dismissing the JD(U)-BJP dispensation led by Nitish Kumar.
A day after B S Yeddyurappa of the BJP, which emerged as the single-largest party in Karnataka but did not have a simple majority, was invited by Governor Vajubhai Vala to form the government, RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav said the Bihar Governor should follow the same principle and invite his party to form the government.
Tejashwi said he wished to submit to the Governor that there cannot be double standards. "If a single largest party has to be allowed to form a government in a hung assembly (in Karnataka), then the Nitish Kumar government must be dismissed and the RJD invited to prove its majority on the floor of the House," he told reporters here.
Tejaswi, who is son of RJD supremo Lalu Prasad, was interacting with mediapersons shortly after he put out a tweet saying, "I will meet Honourable Governor of Bihar along with MLAs as we are single largest party of Bihar."
The RJD was relegated to opposition in Bihar last year after the JD(U) walked away from the three-party alliance, which also involved the Congress, and joined hands with the BJP to form a new government under Nitish Kumar.
In the 243-member Bihar Assembly, the RJD is the single-largest party with 80 MLAs, while JD(U) has 71 legislators and the BJP has 53. NDA constituent LJP and Rashtriya Lok Samata Party have two seats each. The Congress has 27 MLAs.
"If a post-poll alliance (JD(U)-BJP) having the numbers required for a majority is acceptable in Bihar, then the same yardstick must be applied in Karnataka," said Tejashwi, who was deputy chief minister in the RJD-JD(U)-Congress government.
"B S Yeddyurappa should step down and the BJP should withdraw its claim to make way for the Congress-JD(S) combine."
Bihar Congress Working President Kaukab Qadri told PTI, "There is logic in what Tejashwi is saying...we will go with the RJD to Raj Bhawan."
Tejashwi held the press conference at his 5 Deshratna Marg house and not at 10 the Circular Road bunglow alloted to his mother Rabri Devi, where he generally addresses media, and where his father Lalu Prasad is staying after
being released from a Ranchi jail on six-week interim bail in fodder scam cases on medical grounds.
In Karnataka, while the Congress-JD(S) combine has been claiming a majority with the support of 117 MLAs, the BJP has 104 seats in the Assembly, eight short of a majority.
"The BJP should tell us from where it is going to manage the required number of MLAs in Karnataka. It is obvious that it is going to take recourse to two of its tried and tested formulae. The first is its tactic of high-handedness and blackmail which involves coercing political opponents into submission by letting loose investigating agencies after them. And the second is blatant horse-trading," Tejashwi said.
He also said the BJP could have managed the numbers by offering its support to the JD(S) after the assembly polls as the Congress did.
"But it did not do so out of arrogance and its suspicion of other political parties which have been reluctant to support its dangerous agenda, which include tinkering with the Constitution. No wonder, the BJP has been losing ally after ally. The TDP pulled out of the NDA recently while the BJP-Shiv Sena relations have not been good," Yadav alleged.
Tejaswi said the entire opposition in the country must unite now against the BJP's politics of "double standards, high-handedness and blackmail".
"All opposition parties should ask their cadres to help the Congress-JD(S) combine in its fight on the streets of Bengaluru," he said.
Meanwhile, BJP spokesman Shahnawaz Hussain mocked the young RJD leader's outburst, advising him to go among the people and gauge the "declining" popularity of his party instead of wasting his own time as well as that of the Governor.
He also described the Congress decision to back the JD(S) in Karnataka as an opportunistic move, aimed at achieving power through back door.
The JD(U) also slammed Tejashwi. "The Bihar case is different from Karnataka's. Here a government under Nitish Kumar was already in power and after he tendered resignation (over graft charge on Tejashwi), the BJP gave a letter promising unconditional support to him to form a joint government," JD(U) state spokesman and MLC Niraj Kumar said.
"This reflects Tejashwi's 'agayanta' (ignorance) about Constitution," he said.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)