Bihar seat sharing finalised: BJP may fight on 20 seats, JD (U) to get 12
New Delhi, Aug 30: After months of hectic parleys, the seat sharing between the BJP and its allies in Bihar for the 2019 Lok Sabha election has been finalised. The BJP's allies in Bihar are Nitish Kumar-led Janata Dal (United) (JD (U)), Ram Vilas Paswan-led Lok Janshakti Party (LJP) and Upendra Kushwaha-led Rashtriya Lok Samta Party (RLSP).
According to reports, the BJP may contest in 20 seats while the JD (U) will fight the General Elections from 12 seats. LJP and RLSP may contest from six and two seats, respectively.
Bihar has 40 Lok Sabha seats. In 2014 Lok Sabha elections, the BJP, riding on Modi-wave, won 22 seats, LJP won six seats and the RLSP won three seats. Altogether, the NDA won 31 out of the 40 seats in Bihar in 2014. JD (U), which could manage just 2 seats in 2014, was then not part of the NDA then.
BJP president Amit Shah had in July met Bihar chief minister and JD (U) chief Nitish Kumar in Patna to discuss the seat-sharing formula ahead of the 2019 Lok Sabha elections. The JD (U) had been pushing BJP for more seats based on it performance in 2015 Bihar assembly elections in which it won 71 out of the 243 seats.
Lok Janshakti Party president Ram Vilas Paswan had in June said all BJP-led NDA partners in Bihar wanted "an early decision" on seat sharing for the 2019 Lok Sabha polls. Pawan had hinted that it would not sacrifice any of its six sitting seats in the state.
In 2013, Nitish had walked out of the NDA after which the BJP allied with the LJP and the Rashtriya Lok Samata Party (RLSP) which was floated by the JD(U) chief's erstwhile associate Upendra Kushwaha.
For 2015 assembly elections, Nitish allied with the RJD and Congress to form a grand alliance which formed the government. But the government barely after 20 months when Nitish walked out of the grand alliance and again joined hands with the BJP. The current government in Bihar is a BJP-JD (U) alliance.