JD-U-BJP alliance unfortunate, says Sharad Yadav
Breaking his silence on the JD-U's new tie-up with the BJP in Bihar, senior Janata Dal-United leader Sharad Yadav on Monday described it as "unfortunate" and said he did not agree with the decision taken by JD-U President and Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar.
"I don't agree with the decision in Bihar. It is unfortunate," Yadav told reporters outside Parliament.
"The mandate of the people (2015 Bihar assembly polls) was not for this," the Rajya Sabha member said on the JD-U breaking its alliance the Grand Alliance of RJD and Congress in the state.
Reacting to his remarks, Union Minister Rajiv Pratap Rudy said: "Sharad Yadav is not interested in Bihar's politics. He is simply restless."
The Chief Minister, after resigning on Wednesday, said he felt "suffocated" and referred to Lalu Yadav's son Tejashwi's refusal to resign as his deputy despite corruption charges.
Some Janata Dal (United) leaders went public with their criticism of the swap but Sharad Yadav had till now communicated only through his silence and occasional tweets critical of the BJP-led central government.
The 70-year-old was replaced as party president by Nitish Kumar a year ago, a move designed to give the Chief Minister a free hand in decisions ahead of the 2019 national election. As Nitish Kumar's stand-in in Delhi, Sharad Yadav recently attended opposition meetings to decide on candidates for president and vice president.
After Nitish Kumar broke with the opposition and backed government candidate Ram Nath Kovind for president, there were questions within the ranks of the opposition on whether Sharad Yadav really represented his party.
Reports suggested Sharad Yadav kept in touch with opposition leaders and shared his disapproval of Nitish Kumar reuniting with the BJP.