Bihar's Grand Alliance likely to announce seat-sharing deal today; Congress, JMM may skip presser
RJD chief ministerial candidate Tejashwi Yadav is expected to make public the seat-sharing deal in the presence of leaders of the coalition. However, sources say that Congress and JMM are unhappy with the pact
Bihar's opposition Grand Alliance has hammered a seat-sharing deal for the upcoming Assembly elections in the state and a formal announcement on the allotment of seats among the partners is expected to be made on Saturday evening, sources said.
The seat-sharing exercise gained pace after RJD supremo Lalu Prasad's emissary Bhola Yadav returned to Patna from Ranchi on Thursday with his message on the distribution of seats among different partners, they said.
"Seat-sharing has been finalised and an announcement will be made in all likelihood today evening," RJD spokesperson Mrityunjay Tiwari told PTI.
Apart from the RJD, which is spearheading the opposition coalition, the Congress, Left parties CPI-ML, CPI and the CPM, the Vikasheel Insan Party (VIP) and Jharkhand's ruling party JMM will unitedly fight the Bihar elections scheduled in October-November. The Congress has been offered 58-60 seats, CPI-ML 13-15, CPI and CPM altogether 8-10, Bollywood set designer Mukesh Sahni's VIP 8-10 and the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha two, while the remaining seats in the 243-strong assembly will be contested by Lalu Prasad's party, sources said.
RJD chief ministerial candidate Tejashwi Yadav is expected to make public the seat-sharing deal at a press conference in the presence of leaders of the coalition, they said.
Sources in Congress, however, said they are not happy with the seat-sharing pact and no senior leader of the party is expected at the presser.
Congress general secretary and Bihar in-charge Shaktisinh Gohil has returned to Delhi on Friday night.
The party's state unit chief Madan Mohan Jha and CLP leader Sadanand Singh are also expected to reach the national capital by evening.
Sources in the Congress said the grand old party is not happy with the distribution of the seats because besides being offered a lesser number of seats, it is being given constituencies where the party has never won.
The CPI-ML, which has three MLAs in the assembly and had earlier issued a list of 30 seats for the first phase of polling on 28 October without waiting for a formal announcement, has reached an understanding after a meeting of its top leader Deepankar Bhattacharya with Tejashwi Yadav on Thursday night and confirmed it will be a part of the Mahagathbandhan, sources said.
"Our party leader will be present at the press conference where the seat-sharing will be formally announced," CPI-ML secretary Kunal told PTI.
No leader of the JMM is expected to be present at the press meet. "We will comment only after a formal announcement of seats is made in the Grand Alliance," JMM national general secretary and spokesperson Vinod Pandey told