Senior JD(U) leader Sharad Yadav today dismissed the threat of action against him by some party leaders for criticising Chief Minister Nitish Kumar for breaking the Grand Alliance in Bihar and going with the BJP, saying he had stood up against former prime minister Indira Gandhi and was not afraid of anyone. "Some party leaders are threatening me and those siding with me... I have faced Indira Gandhi and was not scared.
Who are they to frighten me?" the JD(U) parliamentary party leader in the Rajya Sabha said here. Yadav, who has made public his protest against the decision of Kumar, his successor to the party's top post, was addressing a gathering on the second day of his three-day 'Samvad Yatra' in Bihar to have a "dialogue with the people". Former JD(U) MP Arjun Rai and ex-party MLA Ramai Ram accompanied him, but it was mostly RJD workers and supporters who attended his roadside meetings here and en route to Darbhanga and Madhubani during the day. Yadav, a former JD(U) president, has made it clear that there is virtually no scope for a compromise between him and Kumar, whose move to form a coalition government with the BJP he had earlier described as a "betrayal of the people's faith". Yesterday, he had categorically said, "I stand with the mahagathbandhan (Grand Alliance).... Sarkari JD(U) is with Nitish Kumar, while the original party is with me." On Kumar and his followers' stand that they had broken the Grand Alliance of the JD(U), RJD and Congress "to uphold zero-tolerance towards corruption", Yadav said, "I have raised my voice against corruption the maximum number of times -- be it the 2G scam, the Commonwealth scam, hawala or those related to godman Asaram Bapu." On the JD(U) leaders' argument that they could not compromise with the RJD over corruption, he asked, "Lalu Prasad had gone to jail on corruption charges. Then, under what circumstance was an alliance forged with him (for the 2015 Bihar Assembly polls)?" Kumar had resigned as Bihar chief minister on July 26 as the then deputy chief minister and RJD supremo Lalu Prasad's son Tejaswi Yadav did not come clean on an FIR lodged by the CBI against him and some of his family members in a land-for- hotels case. He later joined hands with the BJP to form a government "in the interest of Bihar". Yadav said his 'Samvad Yatra', which had started from Bihar, would also spread to the rest of the country. He is scheduled to spend the night at Madhubani and conclude his tour of the state tomorrow with a meeting at Madhepura, the constituency he had represented in Parliament several times earlier. The JD(U) has distanced itself from Yadav's tour and has gradually started talking tough against him. JD(U) state spokesman Neeraj Kumar took a jibe at Yadav saying he had become the "political uncle" of Lalu's sons Tejaswi and Tej Pratap Yadav, who were facing graft charges. The party would initiate appropriate action against Yadav "at the right time", he added.
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