Congress targets JDU over tough ties with NDA

New Delhi: Congress today took a dig at JDU over its "difficulty" in continuing ties with NDA sans BJP veteran LK Advani, saying Nitish Kumar wants a treatment for the symptom of communalism but does not want to address its root cause.

"Nitish Kumar wants a treatment for the symptom of communalism but does not want to address its root cause. The fact is that LK Advani had begun the communalisation of politics in India, and Narendra Modi is a byproduct of this brand of politics," said Congress spokesperson Shakeel Ahmed.

Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar. Image courtesy PIB

Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar. Image courtesy PIB

He was responding to a question about JDU general secretary KC Tyagi's remark that it would be difficult for his party to continue in the alliance in the absence of LK Advani, who resigned from key party posts after Narendra Modi was anointed as BJP's campaign committee chief.

"If he (Advani) is not at the helm of affairs, it will be very difficult for us to continue in the alliance...NDA's prime ministerial candidate should be secular, have a clean and progressive image. We will not compromise on the issue of secularism," Tyagi said, virtually threatening a pull out.

On Monday, JDU president Sharad Yadav had termed Advani's resignation a "serious issue" and "not good for NDA's health" and added that he was "deeply saddened".

The Congress spokesperson said it was ultimately for JDU to decide whether it wants to stay with Advani or Modi.

Replying to a question on whether Congress foresees split in NDA over Narendra Modi's rise in BJP, another party spokesperson Raj Babbar said Congress had already said that it will have repercussions.

When asked whether JDU would quit NDA, he merely said, "Let us see."

Congress sees in JDU a potential ally in case Nitish Kumar's party walks out of NDA over the Modi issue, but a number of Congress leaders are doubtful whether such an eventuality will happen.

PTI