The National Democratic Alliance (NDA) in Bihar deferred the announcement of its seat-sharing arrangement, originally scheduled for Saturday, till Sunday. This was because Lok Janshakti Party chief Ram Vilas Paswan did not return to Delhi from Mumbai, as earlier expected, The Times of India reported.
Sources told the newspaper Amit Shah, Nitish Kumar, Ram Vilas Paswan, his son Chirag Paswan and Arun Jaitley will meet at the BJP chief's residence at 10 am on Sunday.
The discussions between the NDA constituents for seat-sharing for the 2019 Lok Sabha election are being keenly watched, as they come in the backdrop of recent troubles in the alliance. The RLSP recently left the NDA, with its leader saying that members of the alliance have become "arrogant."
RLSP chief Upendra Kushwaha also remarked that Rahul Gandhi has developed his "personality" and people are looking towards him as an option for replacing Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
However, JD(U) president Bashishtha Narayan Singh sounded a note of optimism, and was quoted in The Hindu as saying, "When the number of seats to be fought by each partner has been decided, there is really no difficulty. We are confident that people will support the alliance and the work of the Nitish Kumar government in Bihar.”
The BJP is reported to have finalised a seat-sharing arrangement with the LJP, with the latter expected to contest five Lok Sabha seats in the state and its president Ram Vilas Paswan likely to be given a berth in the Rajya Sabha.
Chirag, who has been vocal in airing his party's differences with the BJP, told reporters that talks were on and claimed there were other issues besides sharing of seats.
Sources later said differences between the two parties have been resolved.
Shah earlier announced that his party and its key ally JD(U), which is headed by Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar, will be contesting equal number of seats in the politically crucial state where the BJP-led NDA won 31 seats in 2014.
With inputs from agencies
Updated Date: Dec 22, 2018 23:45:18 IST