A new party led by former Union Minister Sharad Yadav will be formally floated after the December Gujarat assembly elections and its name and symbol announced within a week, a JD-U leader owing allegiance to Yadav said on Monday.
“The Janata Dal-United’s faction led by Yadav will contest seven of the 182 seats in Gujarat in alliance with the Congress and under the banner of a newly formed regional outfit called Rashtriya Tribal Party,” party General Secretary Arun Kumar Srivastava told reporters here.
“All seven candidates will contest on ‘auto-rickshaw’ poll symbol,” Srivastava said after a National Executive meeting, attended by Sharad Yadav and party Rajya Sabha MP Ali Anwar.
He said Sharad Yadav, a former President of the JD-U, will campaign for these seven candidates from December 4 in Gujarat, which goes to the polls on December 9 and 14.
The announcement marks a formal parting of ways between Yadav and Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar.
Sharad Yadav and his supporters broke away from the Nitish Kumar faction after the latter joined the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance in July.
Taking a dig at Nitish Kumar, who is also the JD-U President, Srivastava said: “He has become a ‘B’ team of the Bharatiya Janata Party.
He said the Sharad Yadav faction called a National Executive meeting in view of the Election Commission recognising the faction led by Nitish Kumar as the real JD-U on November 17 and allotting the poll symbol of “arrow” to it.
“After the Election Commission order, Gujarat’s Chagadia MLA Chhotubhai A Vasava resigned from the party’s primary membership. The Sharad Yadav faction has since appointed Tamil Nadu leader K Rajasekhran as party acting President and MP Nagagauda as Vice President,” he said.
Earlier, addressing his supporters at the meeting, Sharad Yadav asked them to carry on with politics through the proposed party even as the faction will contest the EC decision in a court of law.
He accused Nitish Kumar of betraying the faith of over 11 crore people in Bihar who had voted for the Grand Alliance, formed in 2015 and comprising the Rashtriya Janata Dal, JD-U and the Congress.