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No tie-up with RJD: Paswan

Sandeep Dikshit

Alliance with CPI on all but one seat


  • LJP will not criticise Congress
  • Takes different stand on land reforms

    NEW DELHI: Union Minister and Lok Janshakti Party (LJP) leader Ram Vilas Paswan on Monday ruled out any alliance with the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) before or after the Bihar Assembly elections.

    "Promises are to be kept even at the pain of death. I will stand by what I have said all along. The LJP will never go with the RJD,'' said Mr. Paswan, asked to react to the Congress observation of a post-poll pact in case of a hung Assembly. At the same time, he said the LJP would not criticise the Congress.

    Taking a different stand on the land redistribution issue in Bihar, Mr. Paswan said he was fully committed to land reforms but wanted the Government to buy the surplus and fallow land and then distribute it to the landless. "Though land is vacant in government records, it is actually occupied. Clashes and court cases start when the landless try to occupy that land being tilled or occupied by others,'' he said. Large parts of the State, particularly central Bihar, witness clashes between organisations of landless and farmers leading to financially debilitating court cases because no land was actually unoccupied, he said.

    The Minister said his alliance with some Left parties would contest all but one seat. It had decided to leave the Sheikhpura Assembly seat held by the daughter-in-law of Rajo Singh who won the seat six times and was murdered earlier this month. The Communist Party of India (CPI) would contest 36 seats and differences remained on only a couple of seats such as Chautham in Khagaria district where both parties had a strong base. The number of seats to be allotted to other alliance partners, the Revolutionary Socialist Party and the Forward Bloc, would be announced in a couple of days.

    Mr. Paswan denied he had discussed seat sharing with either the Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist) Liberation or the Samajwadi Party. The CPI did broach the subject of an alliance with the CPI(ML) Liberation but talks could not proceed as the party insisted on contesting seats held by the LJP and the CPI.

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