The Hindustani Awam Morcha (HAM) has made its vision clear that it would work for the poor and the common man, and would grow nationally in order to achieve its goal. Stressing its plan to move beyond the regional tag, party leader Jitan Ram Manjhi revealed to thestatesman.com: “My aim is clear, I don’t want to get indulged into the caste-based politics. Me and my party will work for the upliftment of the poor masses nationally.”
“In our meeting, we made it very clear that our party’s principles will reflect upon the aspirations of the poor,” he added.
On June 12, Manjhi had announced his party&’s alliance with the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) for the coming Bihar polls after meeting Bharatiya Janata Party&’s (BJP) president Amit Shah.
Senior HAM leaders claimed to contest the coming elections on 40 seats out of the 243 assembly seats, but Manjhi remained tight lipped about the number of seats on which his party would contest the election.
Speaking on the seat sharing issue, and refuting the claims of several leaders, Manjhi said, “Rumors have no answers; we are the alliance partner of the NDA and all the alliance members would sit to discuss the seat sharing issue."
“We are not concerned about how many seats we would be fighting. We simply want to defeat the Lalu-Nitish alliance and form an NDA government in the state,” Manjhi said, adding, "If we keep on debating about the seats then we would suffer losses. Right now, we are focusing on all such candidates who can win. And seat sharing discussions cannot take place in the open as these things are confidential and it needs to be discussed with the partners in a closed room.”
When asked about several alliance leaders projecting themselves as the chief ministerial candidate in the state, the HAM leader said, “In my personal view, anyone can project himself as the CM candidate, the manner in which Upendra Kushwaha has been projected. However, I had said that I’m not a CM candidate.”
Further commenting on Kushwaha&’s name for the post, Manjhi said, “Kushwaha&’s name was projected for the CM’s post by the Rashtriya Lok Samata Party (RLSP) in their party&’s meeting. They are also our alliance partner. But, I somehow feel that he may have desired to become CM or his party is simply trying to indulge in pressure politics.”
However, the leader also warned all its alliance members to respect the decision of the saffron party which has cleared that they won’t announce the name of its chief ministerial candidate before elections.
“Decision on CM’s post would be taken in the alliance member party&’s meeting after the elections. And if the party suggests Kushwaha&’s name or anyone else’s name then no one should have a problem with it,” the leader added.
When asked about BJP senior leader CP Thakur&’s claim of being the CM candidate, the leader said, “If Kushwaha can project himself as the CM candidate, then why not Thakur, what is the big deal in it?”
However, Manjhi rubbished the claims of differences among the alliance partners and its effect on the upcoming elections, he said, “These rumors won’t affect the course of the election. Now, the voters of Bihar are very conscious and aware.”
The HAM was formed on February 28 by Manjhi after being expelled from the ruling Janata Dal (United) (JD-U).