NEW DELHI: Bihar’s Rashtriya Lok Samta Party (RLSP) is likely to merge with Janata Dal-United on March 14 in Patna. State Chief Minister Nitish Kumar is also likely to be present on the occasion of the merger.
A senior leader of the RLSP told ANI, “RLSP has convened a two-day meeting at Patna on March 13-14 to seek approval from party workers on the merger with the JD-U. The move comes after the debacle in the state Assembly elections 2020.”
Under the leadership of Upendra Kushwaha, the party had failed to secure even a single seat in the 243 member Bihar Assembly.
Speaking to ANI, Secretary-General of RLSP Madhav Anand, a close associate of Upendra Kushwaha said: “Wait till March 14 and you will know the decision of the party.”
JD-U sources are also hopeful that the impending merger would have a wide-ranging impact on Bihar’s politics.
“RLSP’s merger plan with JD-U is almost finalised and is expected to be announced on March 14 in Patna. We hope that this merger will strengthen the JD-U and will have a significant impact on the state’s politics,” a senior JD-U leader said.
It is believed that the move comes as part of JD-U’s plans to consolidate its vote bank in the state. The JD-U has only 43 MLAs and is the junior partner in the NDA government. With 74 legislators, the Bharatiya Janata Party had emerged as the big brother in the 2020 Assembly polls.
In the recent Bihar Assembly polls RLSP fought the elections as part of an alliance comprising, among others, Asaduddin Owaisis AIMIM (All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen) and Mayawatis’ Bahujan Samaj Party, declaring itself the Chief Ministerial candidate but could not win even a single seat.
In November 2020, JD-U President Nitish Kumar took oath as the Chief Minister of Bihar for the fourth straight term.
The NDA secured a 125-seat majority in the 243-seat strong Bihar Legislative Assembly, of which BJP won on 74 seats, JD-U on 43 while eight seats were won by two other NDA constituents.