Nitish's ire against BJP: JD(U) likely to join Congress

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Patna, June 13: Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar did not try to hide his disappointment with Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). According to sources, Kumar-led JD(U) may join Congress after breaking its 17-year-old tie with BJP.

Kumar, who is expected to declare his final decision after June 14, was upset with BJP which has promoted Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi as party election campaign committee chief for 2014 poll.

JD(U) spokesperson Rajeev Ranjan recently hinted that the party may consider the decision of joining Congress-led UPA if it gives Bihar the "backward status".

Nitish, Sonia and Rajnath Singh

Speaking to media on Wednesday, June 12, Ranjan said, "In politics, all possibilities are open. Right now we are a part of the NDA and our first priority is to take a decision on this alliance."

The UPA earlier hinted that it might give Bihar the much awaited "special status". Clarifying UPA government's stand on the decision, Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram had said, "...the criteria is to determine backwardness. Once we agree on this criteria, once we implement the criteria, states will qualify under that criteria and going by whatever information that I have, Bihar will certainly qualify under the new criteria."

The finance minister had informed about a high-level sub-committee which would soon be constituted to finalise the new criteria for "backwardness."

Now, when UPA is all set to give "special status" to Bihar, Nitish and his party members may join Congress breaking its alliance with NDA.

"Only a formal announcement is to made for snapping the ties with the BJP," said a senior JD-U leader, considered close to Nitish Kumar who virtually controls the party.

"Till late yesterday (Tuesday) night, a number of party leaders, including ministers, held discussions with Nitish Kumar at his official residence, 1 Anne Marg, and it was decided to formally announce the end of ties with BJP in next two to three days," said a leader who did not want to be identified.

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