BJP, JD (U) Expected To Reach Broad Understanding On Seat Sharing For 2019 LS Polls


New Delhi:  With very little option in the hands of the Janata Dal (United), BJP president Amit Shah and Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar will be meeting in Patna today. All eyes will be on this meeting as it is expected that the two NDA leaders will arrive at a broad understanding on seat-sharing for the 2019 general election.

The two leaders are scheduled to meet over breakfast at the State Guest House and again for dinner at the chief minister's official residence in the late evening. Sources in the BJP and the JD(U) said although a detailed discussion on seat-sharing might not take place, Kumar and Shah were expected to arrive at a broad understanding on the issue that had been plaguing the alliance for the last few months.

Shah is scheduled to arrive at the Bihar capital on a day-long tour on Thursday-- his first visit to the state since last year's dramatic turnaround when the saffron party joined hands with Kumar's JD(U), ending four years of political hostility. Though a large number of BJP leaders, including the party's national general secretary in-charge for Bihar BhupendraYadav, Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Kumar Modi and all the Union ministers hailing from the state including Ravi Shankar Prasad, are likely to be present at the deliberations, all eyes will be on Shah's interactions with Kumar.

The issue of seat-sharing for the LokSabha polls within the NDA in Bihar has become a thorny one in the wake of recent insistence by a number of JD(U) leaders that the party should be allotted a number of constituencies -- commensurate with its standing in the state Assembly -- where it has the highest tally among the partners of the BJP-led coalition. The NDA in Bihar also comprises the LJP and the RLSP, headed by Union ministers Ram Vilas Paswan and Upendra Kushwaha respectively.

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