Patna: One day before the counting of votes for the 2020 Bihar Legislative Assembly elections, jubilation in the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) camps were visible, while there was complete silence in the Janata Dal (United) (JD-U) camp on Monday.
Meanwhile, a large number of people were seen outside the residence of RJD leader Tejaswhi Prasad Yadav at 10, Circular Road. They claimed to have come there to greet the leader on his birthday.
Lok Janshakti Party (LJP) president Chirag Paswan and Congress leader Rahul Gandhi had also sent their birthday greetings to the young RJD leader, earlier in the day.
However, at the JD(U) office on the Beer Chand Patel Path in Patna, there was complete silence. Not even the party workers seemed to be present. A couple of kilometres down the same road, however, is situated the BJP party office, where a few spokespersons were present.
According to one of them, the saffron camp has ordered crackers worth Rs 5 lakhs and 100 kgs of laddoos ahead of their planned “celebrations” in Patna City area tomorrow. On this day, RJD state president Jagdananad Singh penned a letter to the party’s block-level presidents directing them to not use crackers on the day of the result.
They have been asked to not resort to vandalism over victory. There should be no celebratory firing or bad behaviour after the results, Singh warned. He mentioned that Tejaswhi had also decided to keep his birthday celebrations limited to only his family. His eldest sister, Rajya Sabha member Misa Bharti, organised a lantern-lit cake-cutting ceremony at 10, Circular Road, that was attended only by the kin.
Congress spokesman Prem Chandra Mishra told the Free Press Journal that all 70 candidates in the fray have been directed to remain vigilant over the counting booths. They have been instructed to come to Patna only after receiving the certificates from returning officers.
Mishra hoped that at least 50 Congress candidates would be elected this time. In the 2015 elections, 27 Congress nominees were elected.
The All India Congress Committee (AICC) has sent its general secretary in-charge, Randip Surjewala, and election in-charge, Avinash Pandey, in advance as observers to elect the Congress legislative party leader.
The two leaders would negotiate with Tejaswhi Yadav on "cabinet formation," he said.
Surjewala and Pandey were also Congress' crisis managers in Rajasthan a couple of months back.
MP Shakti Singh Gohil, who is also a general secretary and was stationed at Patna during the assembly elections, is down with coronavirus disease (COVID-19) and is currently undergoing treatment.
Meanwhile, a former president of the Bihar Pradesh Congress Committee, Ram Jatan Sinha, met state JDU president Bashistha Naraian Singh on Monday.
Sinha had left JD(U) last month to protest against alleged discrimination in ticket distribution. He told the Free Press Journal that there was gloom in the JD(U) circles since even their state president admitted that the response of people during the elections was poor.