Patna : Bitterness between chief minister Nitish Kumar and RJD president Lalu Prasad was visible at the Iftar Party hosted by Lalu at his Patna residence on Friday. Though they sat next to each other, there was not a word exchanged between the two and both tried to even avoid eye contacts.
Differences between the RJD and JDU presidents had surfaced over the choice of Presidential candidate. Unlike in the past, Lalu did not greet Nitish nor embraced him. Nitish was received by RJD MP Jaiprakash Yadav who escorted him to the hall where Iftar was being held. Nitish did not talk either to Rabri Devi, her two sons who are his Cabinet colleagues nor was greeted by Misa Bharti, RJD MP.
Nitish, however, exchanged greetings with his Cabinet colleage Ashok Chaudhury and Speaker of Bihar Assembly Vijay Kumar Chaudhury. Only one minister from JDU, Maheshwar Hazari, was present at the Iftar.
Earlier in the day, Lalu and his deputy Raghuwansh Prasad Singh, vice-president of RJD, had used strong words against Nitish. Lalu alleged there was some “deal” between Nitish and the BJP for supporting Ram Nath Kovind. He alleged Nitish had declared he wanted to free India of RSS, but was supporting a strong RSS man, Kovind, in the elections. Nitish earlier rejected the demand of Lalu to reconsider JDU decision on supporting Kovind.
Raghunwash Prasad Singh went to the extendt of calling Nitish “Jaichand and Man Singh”’,traitors in Rajputana wars against Mughals.
“It is a well thought out decision, and our sentiments are clear. Ram Nath Kovind’s role as Bihar Governor has been admirable, he worked impartially. We are glad that our state’s Governor is going to become the President of India,” Nitish said.