JD-U, LJP will cease to be politically relevant if they stay with BJP: Congress
August 05, 2018  13:01
Parties like Nitish Kumar's Janata Dal-United and Ram Vilas Paswan's Lok Janshakti Party will cease to be politically relevant in Bihar if they stay in alliance with the Bharatiya Janata Party as there is "discontent" among backward classes, Congress leader in-charge of the state Shaktisinh Gohil said today.
Gohil, also a party spokesperson, said "winnability" will be the main criteria for seat sharing among 'grand alliance' parties in Bihar and opposition unity there will show the way for cooperation in other states. 
He said that in Bihar, National Democratic Alliance constituents the JD-U, the LJP and Upendra Kushwaha's Rashtriya Lok Samta Party which primarily draw their support from people belonging to backward classes, are likely to quit the alliance before the Lok Sabha polls.
"There is a loud and clear message in Bihar that the central government under Prime Minister Narendra Modi is against the SCs, STs, backward and most backward classes. All those in alliance with the BJP, be it Nitish Kumar ji, Paswan ji, Kushwaha ji, they all seek support of people belonging to these sections, so how will they stay with the BJP," he told PTI..
"I don't think these parties will stay with the NDA and if they stay, the BJP will just lose, but they will cease to be politically relevant," he said.
Gohil said that the best law for the SCs and STs was the SC/ST Prevention of Atrocities Act that was brought by former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi and the NDA government committed the "sin" of diluting it. 
The judge who gave two judgements against the SCs and STs was given a big post in the National Green Tribunal after retirement by the government, he said, referring to the appointment of AK Goel as NGT chairman.
"Not going by what we are saying or the RJD is saying, for their own sake, they will have to get out of the alliance with the BJP," Gohil said of NDA alliance partners in Bihar.
Asked if opposition's doors are open for Kumar, Paswan and Kushwaha, he said, "I would not like to answer a hypothetical question, I will only react if such a situation arises."
Dalit groups under the banner of the All India Ambedkar Mahasabha have given a call for Bharat bandh on August 9 against the dilution of the Act.
A bill to overturn  the Supreme Court order, which had laid down certain safeguards in the SC/ST law to prevent atrocities against people of scheduled castes and tribes, was introduced in the Lok Sabha on Friday.
This is being seen as a move by the NDA government to reach out to Dalits.
The LJP and Kushwaha had made statements expressing their concerns over issues related to SCs and STs and seemed to be on a collision course with the government.
However, the LJP has since softened its stand following the tabling of the bill with LJP leader and MP Chirag Paswan saying that the proposed Bharat bandh should be called off as the Centre has decided to bring an amendment to restore the law.
Gohil said the tabling of the bill was a late move by the BJP as it was under pressure from some of its allies and MPs. He said there was still "discontent" among the backward classes. -- PTI
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