Rashtriya Lok Samata Party (RLSP) president Upendra Kushwaha on Monday released the first list of 17 candidates for the Bihar assembly polls and also expressed his unhappiness with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) over the Minapur seat.

“Earlier we were told that the sitting MLA would be given the ticket (for Minapur constituency) and we agreed on that condition, but now the MLA’s family member has been nominated. They kept us in the dark,” Kushwaha said while talking about the Minapur constituency. 

“I will meet Amit Shah to discuss the matter,” he added.

On Sunday, the BJP released its third list of 11 candidates and fielded Ajay Kushwaha from Minapur.

RLSP has named Surendra Singh from Valmikinagar, Manoj Kumar Yadav from Visfi, Basant Kushwaha from Harlakhi, Bhudeo Choudhary from Dhoreya, Laln Paswan from Chenari, Himanshu Patel from Sultanganj, Sanjay Mehta from Jagadishpur, Ashok Verma from Kurtha, Baidyanath Kushwaha from Ujiyarpur, Chandan Shah aka Chandan Bagchi from Mahishi, Shiv Shankatr Thakur from Dhamdaha, Ajijur Rahman from Baisi, Indradeo Kushwaha from Nawada, Sanat Singh Kushwaha from Narkatiya, Praveen Kumar from Jehanabad, Shiv Kumar from Barbigha and Ram Bihar Singh from Dumraon.

After releasing the names of the candidates, party&’s spokesperson, Shivraj Singh said, “While allotting the seats the principles of Ram Manohar Lohia, George Fernandes, Karpuri Thakur were followed.”

“None of the candidates are the family members of the party leaders,” he said, adding "There are no criminal cases against any of our party’s candidates.”

According to the seat sharing agreement of the National Democratic Alliance (NDA), in the 243-member Bihar assembly, the BJP would contest 160 seats, the Lok Janshakti Party 40 seats, Hindustani Awam Morcha 20 seats and the RLSP has been allotted 23 seats.

Meanwhile, vowing to give a tough fight to Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) chief Lalu Prasad Yadav, Kushwaha said, “Since the day our party was formed we had pledged to fight against Nitish and Lalu.”

“When Nitish became Bihar&’s chief minister there was a ray of hope that the state won’t remain a land of poor law and order. But, ever since the two leaders have joined hands, the crime graph has again gone up in the state,” he added.

While Kushwaha spoke to media persons, one of the party workers from Narkatiya region, Ajay Kumar Gupta, labeled serious charges against the union minister and accused him of allotting tickets by accepting money.

He raised slogans against the party members and announced that he will contest the elections as an independent candidate from Narkatiya. RLSP has fielded Sant Singh Kushwaha from the region.

Reacting to Gupta&’s charges, Singh alleged that Lalu was backing him and said: “The ruckus created by Gupta was backed by Lalu.”

The hi-voltage elections in Bihar will be fought in five phases between Oct 12 and Nov 5.

The alliance of Nitish and Lalu has further heightened the political drama and people are eagerly waiting for the culmination.

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