Nitish faction removes Sharad as party head in Rajya Sabha

Sharad Yadav Bihar CM Nitish Kumar JD, Janata Dal United New Delhi Indian Express news

Sharad Yadav

The party is also contemplating "precipitous steps" to suspend leaders or workers who have been attending Yadav's rallies in Bihar, sources said.

Yadav's greetings to Patel assumes significance because the JD (U) had asked its lone MLA in Gujarat, Chhotu Vasava, to vote in favour of BJP's Balwantsinh Rajput. "I invited JD (U) to join the NDA", Mr Shah said in a tweet today. It ruled Bihar until Kumar broke ranks and formed a government with the BJP in July.

In what is being seen as punishment for his disapproval of Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar's decision to re-join the BJP-led alliance, Sharad Yadav has been replaced by Nitish's close aide RCP Singh as the Parliamentary Party leader of the Janata Dal-United (JDU) in the Rajya Sabha.

Party leader KC Tyagi said Ansari has been "suspended from the parliamentary party" for attending the meeting. "He [Sharad Yadav] has not been removed from the JD (U)", party leader Vasishtha Narayana said.

On Saturday, Sharad Yadav shot back at Nitish Kumar.

"The whole party agreed to Nitish Kumar's decision to dissociate itself from the grand alliance in Bihar", he added.

JD (U) did not turn a blind eye to all the activities of Sharad. As far as the party is concerned, it has already taken its decision. "People's mandate was against the BJP-led NDA", he said.

Talking about Sharad Yadav's proximity to Lalu Prasad Yadav's RJD, he said during Sharad Yadav's Bihar visit this week, he was surrounded by people from RJD right from the airport, where he landed.

Can Sharad Yadav split the party. The leaders standing with Nitish are threatening the other leaders who support me. "We will fight till the end and go to the masses", said Ansari.

Nitish is expected to formally announce his decision to join the NDA at the party's national executive meeting in Patna on August 19.

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