The Janata Dal (U), a key ally of the Modi Government, is toeing a different political theme is evident again as its president Rajiv Ranjan Singh ‘Lalan’ on Tuesday frowned at the “abba jaan” remarks of Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, saying political parties should maintain “restraint” in their comments and that the country belongs to everyone, be it Hindus, Muslims, Christians or any other community.
The JD(U) recently decided to send its senior leader KC Tyagi to a rally being organised in Jind on September 25 by INLD chief Om Prakash Chautala, seen as part of the effort for forming a non-BJP, non-Congress front.
The JD(U) has also decided to “strongly fight” the upcoming Assembly polls in Uttar Pradesh and Manipur. The JD(U) has, earlier, been quite unhappy with the BJP that it had led its six of the seven MLAs in Arunachal Pradesh to the saffron fold in December 2020.
The party is likely to organise its national executive meeting in UP in November and its office-bearer’s meeting in Manipur as it works to galvanise its organisational machinery in the two States.
Prior to this, the BJP ally has also been putting pressure on the Modi Government to agree to conduct an OBC census in the country.
“Terms like ‘unity in diversity’ are used for our country. The country belongs to all. No remarks should be made that harm the country,” Singh, a confidant of Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, told reporters when asked for his reaction to the BJP leader’s comments.
In this context, he also took a swipe at JMM leader and Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren for his remarks allegedly aimed at Bhojpuri and Magahi-speaking people of the State. “Everybody has a right to settle in whichever part of the country they like,” he said.
Addressing a programme in Kushinagar on Sunday, Yogi had alleged that people did not get rations before 2017 as they do now.
“Because then, people who say ‘abba jaan’ used to digest the rations. The rations of Kushinagar used to go to Nepal and Bangladesh. Today, if anybody tries to swallow the rations meant for poor people, he will land in jail,” the Chief Minister said.
‘Abba jaan’ is the Urdu term for father. In the past in 2017 election rally at Fatehpur in UP a comment on the construction of ‘kabristan and shamshan’ and availability of electricity there made by Prime Minister Narendra Modi had created a similar major controversy and seemingly polarised the voters on the religious lines.
In his Press conference, the JD(U) president, a Lok Sabha MP from Munger, also played down the decision of his party, the biggest BJP ally, to send its senior leader K C Tyagi to a rally being organised in Jind on September 25 by INLD chief Om Prakash Chautala, seen as part of effort for forming a non-BJP, non-Congress front.
“We are strongly part of the NDA (BJP-led alliance),” he said and dismissed the talks about the Third Front, saying his party will attend the rally as it is being organised to mark the birth anniversary of Devi Lal, a towering third front leader of his era. Singh also recalled Kumar’s old association with Chautala.
Chautala had invited Bihar Chief Minister, who has expressed his inability to attend it.
The JD(U) leader also named former MLA Khiru Mahto and Gulab Mahto as the party’s president and vice president respectively for its Jharkhand unit.
Singh said the JD(U) used to be a strong party in the state and added that the appointments are part of its effort to strengthen the regional party in different parts of India.