Millennium Post

Restraint over language must be maintained in Bihar polls: Paswan

New Delhi: The Bihar Assembly polls later this year should be fought on local development issues and restraint over language must be maintained, Union minister and LJP leader Ram Vilas Paswan has said.

The remarks by the BJP ally assume significance as they come after a vitriolic Delhi Assembly polls campaign in which some BJP leaders were rapped by the Election Commission for making inflammatory speeches.

In an interview to PTI, Paswan said the NDA alliance in Bihar was intact and expressed confidence that it would form the government with a two-thirds majority as the Opposition was a "sunken ship".

"LJP (Lok Janshakti Party) has strongly been with the NDA. I have always said only that animal dies on the road who cannot decide whether to go left or right. As far as Nitish (Kumar) ji is concerned, I don't think he will go anywhere," he said when asked about the state of the NDA alliance in Bihar.

In the Delhi polls, winning and losing aside, Kumar's JD(U) and the LJP fought as part of the NDA, he pointed out, asserting that nobody would leave for the opposition alliance in Bihar.

"What is there in the Opposition. Lalu Yadav is in jail, he is unwell, rest of the parties are singing different tunes. So who will go over to the Opposition. It is not even a sinking ship, it is one that has already sunk. They are fighting among themselves, NDA is intact," the Union minister for Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution said.

There is no challenge in Bihar and the NDA will form the government after getting two-thirds majority in the assembly polls, Paswan said.

On BJP leader and Union Home Minister Amit Shah's assertion that Kumar would lead the NDA alliance in Bihar, he said the LJP has no objection to it.

Asked about the vitriolic Delhi polls campaign and provocative statements by some BJP leaders in the run-up to the elections, he said LJP chief Chirag Paswan had made the party's stand clear on this and Shah also admitted that it might have been counterproductive.

"No one has ever gone to the Election Commission against us. Chirag has said that the issue of election is one of development," he said. Article 370 has been abrogated along with Article 35A, triple talaq banned and the Ram Janambhoomi issue is also resolved, so now the state elections should be on local issues, he said.

"In national polls, there is no match for Narendra Modi. In state polls which happened recently, it has been proven that focus should be on local issues of development and restraint over language be maintained," he said.

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