PATNA: As political parties in Bihar prepare for the scheduled Assembly election later this year, there is still a dispute over the formation of a coordination committee among the opposition parties in the Grand Alliance. The Congress has given a week-long 'ultimatum' on this issue.
When Congress interim chief Sonia Gandhi took up the front regarding the coordination committee in the grand alliance, there was hope that coordination would finally be established in the alliance.
After the RJD did not pay heed to the demand of a coordination committee by national president of Hindustani Awam Morcha (HAM) Jitan Ram Manjhi, there was a possibility that the Congress would mediate in the matter. But, after Manjhi's return from Delhi to Patna and the meeting of the core committee of his HAM party, once again there is tension between the two parties.
HAM spokesperson Danish Rizwan said, "Sonia Gandhi, in a meeting with the parties of the grand alliance, talked about the coordination committee in a week to solve the problem. Now there are just three days left. Only then we will take a decision."
Meanwhile, there has also been a tug of war between RJD and HAM. RJD leader Mrityunjay Tiwari seems to dismiss the demand for the coordination committee, saying that no such committee has been formed in the grand alliance so far. HAM spokesman Danish Rizwan has advised RJD leaders to exercise restraint.
Meanwhile, senior Congress leader Lallan Kumar said that all parties in the Grand Alliance need to remain united. Sources say the BJP is also in touch with HAM chief Manjhi. Manjhi has also praised Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, indicating a warming of ties with the NDA. (IANS)