NDA seals Bihar seat-pact, but withholds list

BJP leader and Union Minister Giriraj Singh (Image courtesy Twitter)

The NDA in Bihar on Sunday withheld its candidates’ list at the last minute, although it announced the constituencies each of the three parties – the BJP, JD (U) and the LJP - would contest.

While the BJP had to forgo five of its sitting MPs in the outgoing Lok Sabha, and will be contesting on 17 seats, the JD (U) too will field nominees on 17 other seats. The remaining six seats have been allotted to the LJP.

The biggest setback was for the vocal BJP leader and Union Minister Giriraj Singh who got the boot from his current Lok Sabha constituency Nawada. His seat has been allotted to the LJP, as reported last week by Deccan Herald.

Giriraj may be asked to contest from Begusarai from where the CPI is planning to field former JNU student leader Kanhaiya Kumar.

WHY LIST NOT RELEASED

Sources in the NDA said the list for 40 constituencies was almost ready but to clear some misgivings, “it has been withheld.”

The BJP, which has denied Lok Sabha ticket to its sitting rebel MP Shatrughan Sinha from Patna Sahib, is still struggling to choose from its two Rajya Sabha members – Ravi Shankar Prasad (also a Union Minister) and RK Sinha - to field against the film-star-turned politician.

Similarly, BJP’s Shahnawaz Hussain, a prominent Muslim face, who narrowly lost the 2014 Lok Sabha election from Bhagalpur, has also been denied ticket.

SEATS’ LIST

The 17 seats allotted to BJP are: West Champaran, East Champaran, Sheohar, Madhubani, Araria, Darbhanga, Muzaffapur, Maharajganj, Saran, Ujjiyarpur, Begusarai, Patna Sahib, Pataliputra, Ara, Buxar, Sasaram and Aurangabad.

The 17 Lok Sabha constituencies where the JD (U) would field its candidates include: Valmikinagar, Sitamarhi, Jhanjharpur, Supaul, Katihar, Purnia, Madhepura, Kishanganj, Gopalganj, Siwan, Bhagalpur, Banka, Jehanabad, Gaya, Nalanda, Munger and Karakat.

The remaining six seats which LJP would contest are: Hajipur, Jamui, Khagaria, Vaishali, Nawada and Samastipur.   

“There are no differences within the NDA. The list of candidates will be declared in a day or two,” said Bihar LJP president Pashupati Kumar Paras, who is also the younger brother of Union Minister Ram Vilas Paswan.

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