LJP to contest LS, assembly elections on its own:Paswan

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Patna, Nov 28 (UNI) LJP chief and Steel and Fertiliser Minister Ram Vilas Paswan today announced to go alone in the next Lok Sabha and Bihar Assembly elections and exhorted partymen to begin preparations with all vigour and enthusisam.

Addressing a mammoth party rally organised at the historic Gandhi Maidan here, Mr Paswan said he had opted to become an ally of the UPA during the last Lok Sabha polls to dislodge the then NDA government at the Centre.

''I was a cabinet minister in the Vajpayee led NDA government at the Centre when hundreds of minorities were massacred by rioters in Gujarat while Chief Minister Narendra Modi did nothing to save them and in fact played the role of instigator,'' the union minister said. He added that he was 'humiliated' by the NDA leadership when he pressed the Centre to take suitable action against the Modi government.

''I was shifted to a relatively less important protfolio after I pressed the then Prime Minister for strong action against the Modi government,'' he recalled.

''Congress President Sonia Gandhi had invited me to join as an ally of the UPA and I opted for it to oust the NDA government, which was communal in nature as it failed to discharge its responsibility of intervening during the communal flare up in Gujarat,'' Mr Paswan asserted.

''During the last Lok Sabha elections in Bihar, we had honestly followed the Gathbandhan Dharma(alliance spirit) and tried to ensure the victory of our partners but the RJD was not serious in reciprocating the gesture and worked hard against LJP candidates,'' he lamented, implicitly justifying his decision to go alone in the next parliamentary elections.

Referring to the February 2005 assembly elections which threw up a hung assembly, Mr Paswan said he was prepared to support a muslim candidate for the chief minister's post but RJD Chief Lalu Prasad had vouched for his wife Rabri Devi instead.

He exhorted his party workers to make preparations for both the next Lok Sabha and Bihar Assembly elections sincerely and said he would not seek alliance from any political party. He, however, said those willing to have an alliance with the LJP would be welcome.

Mr Paswan said the next Lok Sabha poll was due in one and a half years but the assembly elections might be held before the expiry of state Vidhan Sabha as ''people would not allow Chief Minister Nitish Kumar to complete its tenure as he had failed'' to fulfil their aspirations.

UNI

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