Sharad Yadav led JD(U) faction to join hands with Congress for Gujarat Assembly Election 2017

The breakaway faction of the JD(U) will contest the Gujarat Assembly polls in alliance with the Congress, its leader Sharad Yadav said on Wednesday as he pitched for a 'minimum division' among opposition parties as they take on the ruling BJP there.

PTI October 25, 2017 18:19:01 IST
Sharad Yadav led JD(U) faction to join hands with Congress for Gujarat Assembly Election 2017

New Delhi: The breakaway faction of the JD(U) will contest the Gujarat Assembly polls in alliance with the Congress, its leader Sharad Yadav said on Wednesday as he pitched for a "minimum division" among opposition parties as they take on the ruling BJP there.

Yadav said he has spoken to vice-president Rahul Gandhi on the tie-up and suggested to him the alliances should be built in such a manner that "division" among opposition parties is "minimised as much as possible".

Sharad Yadav led JDU faction to join hands with Congress for Gujarat Assembly Election 2017

File image of JD(U) leader Sharad Yadav. PTI

To underline how a united Opposition could take on the ruling party effectively, Yadav said the BJP could secure "only 31 percent" votes as against 69 percent bagged by opposition in the 2014 general elections.

The Election Commission earlier on Wednesday announced the schedule for Assembly polls in Gujarat, which has seen over two decades of BJP-rule. The election will be held in two phases on 9 December and 14 December, while votes will be counted on 18 December.

"We have already said it...we have already talked about alliance with the Congress. All efforts are being made to ensure that people remain united," Yadav told reporters at his residence here.

Asked whether the parties would take Sharad Pawar-led NCP along as they take on the BJP, Yadav said it is the Congress which is in the "driving seat" in Gujarat and it has to decide who should be its alliance partners there.

"What we have discussed with Rahulji is that division is minimised as much as possible," he added.

To a question whether the JD(U) group led by him and the Congress have discussed seat-sharing for the polls, Yadav said there has been no deliberation on the issue till now.

"That will be discussed by our unit there and the Congress," he added.

He also said the Election Commission not declaring the schedule for Himachal Pradesh and Gujarat assembly polls simultaneously — the dates for election in the hill state were declared on 12 October  — has dented the image of the poll panel.

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