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Nitish's close confidante dismisses 'big brother' theory


Press Trust of India Patna
JD(U) national general secretary RCP Singh today dismissed the contention of the party spokespersons that it was the "big brother" in the NDA in Bihar, saying in a democracy, all were equals.
Singh, a close confidante of Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, also ruled out the possibility of the JD(U) going over to the Congress-led UPA.
He described the Congress as a sinking ship and said there was no question of joining hands with the party.
During a road-show in Vaishali district, the MP told a news channel that terms like "big brother" and "younger brother" were appropriate to a family, whereas in a democracy, in a coalition, all were equals.
The NDA in Bihar comprises the BJP, the JD(U) the LJP and the RLSP. Singh said all of them would sit together and sort out the issue of seat-sharing for the 2019 Lok Sabha election.
Singh's comment comes in the backdrop of repeated statements of JD(U) spokespersons like Sanjay Singh and Ajay Alok that the party, by virtue of its greater strength in the state Assembly, was like a "big brother" in the NDA and thus, deserved the biggest share of seats in next year's general election in Bihar, which has 40 parliamentary constituencies.
The "big brother" assertions had resulted in discordant voices emerging from the other coalition partners, most noticeably from the Rashtriya Lok Samata Party (RLSP), led by Union minister Upendra Kushwaha, who had left the JD(U) to form his own party before the 2014 general election and had allied with the BJP.
Singh is the JD(U)'s Parliamentary Party leader in the Rajya Sabha after Sharad Yadav was shown the door and subsequently, disqualified as a member of the Upper House.
Together with the RJD and the Congress, the JD(U) had formed the Grand Alliance in 2014, which had won the state Assembly polls a year later, before coming apart last year when Kumar walked out, miffed over corruption allegations against then deputy chief minister Tejashwi Yadav.
Singh also said the telephone call by Kumar to ailing RJD supremo Lalu Prasad yesterday to enquire about his health was a purely humanitarian gesture, adding that it should not give rise to any political speculation.
Union minister and senior BJP leader Ashwini Kumar Choubey also said nothing more should be read into the phone call.

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First Published: Jun 27 2018 | 7:40 PM IST

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