The rift in the Bihar's Grand Alliance seems to be widening, even as JDU chief Nitish Kumar on Sunday expressed interest in attending anti-BJP rally in Patna on August 27.
The tensions in the 'hit formula for Bihar' became apparent when Nitish Kumar decided to back the NDA candidate for the Presidential Election Ram Nath Kovind against the 17 party alliance candidate Meira Kumar.
Recent rumours that Bihar CM will not attend the anti-Bhartiya Janta Party rally organised by RJD chief Lalu Prasad Yadav further added fuel to the fire. Nitish Kumar, however, cleared the air on Sunday by stating that he will attend, provided Lalu Prasad acts as a bigger man and invited him.
Addressing the party's executive committee members, Nitish also revealed the real reason why he decided to skip the June 22 meeting of the opposition parties to discuss its presidential candidate. Reportedly, Congress general secretary (Ghulam Nabi Azad) said something which he should not have at an iftar dinner in Patna on June 21.
Azad had said that the Congress was a party of ideology and principles that did not change its stand. It was a reference to the Bihar CM who'd announced support to the NDA's nominee Ram Nath Kovind after talking of an opposition candidate and even discussing this with Congress chief Sonia Gandhi. Congress has since accepted that the comment was avoidable.
"The JD(U) is not 'pichhlaggoo' (follower) of any party. We work in line with our principles and move on and we will continue doing so," said Nitish.
Nitish heads the JDU, RJD and Congress alliance government in Bihar. Yet, he is well known for taking independent and unpredictable stand when it comes to political alliances or support.
Will his recent actions aggravate the tensions in alliance and jeopardise his seat in the state or not is going to depend on what transpires in the August 27 anti-BJP rally.
RJD chief Lalu Yadav has already announced that rally will be attended by West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee, Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav and BSP supremo Mayawati.