Janata Dal-United, a crucial ally of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in Bihar and also part of NDA at the Centre, has decided to go solo in Jharkhand Assembly elections. A go-ahead to the party's Jharkhand unit to contest the Assembly polls on its own was given by Bihar Chief Minister and JDU chief Nitish Kumar. The decision in this regard was made after a team of Jharkhand JDU leaders recently met Nitish Kumar at his official residence. The party has decided to field candidates on all 81 Assembly seats of the state.
Jharkhand JD-U state president Salkhan Murmu said the party would organise a big conference in Ranchi on August 25.
"While all parties, including the BJP, have failed to fulfill the promises made to the people of Jharkhand, the JD-U will deliver on its promises," said Murmu.
The meeting was also attended by poll strategist and party’s vice president Prashant Kishor. Others who were present in the meeting were – JDU in-charge for Jharkhand and Bihar minister Ram Sewak Singh, Munger MLA Rajiv Ranjan Singh, former Jharkhand MLA Khiru Mahto, Bihar MLC Sanjay Kumar Singh alias Gandhi Ji, senior Jharkhand leader Prem Kataruka and former MLC Praveen Singh.
Assembly elections in the state are due in the month of November-December this year. In the 2014 elections, the BJP and its ally All Jharkhand Students Union (AJSU) won 42 seats (BJP-37 and AJSU-5). However, the ruling party’s total strength went up to 48 after six of the total eight members of Babulal Marandi-led JVM (P) had joined the BJP on February 11, 2015