Lalu Yadav’s aversion to an alliance could be Congress’s bane; Sonia knows that better

It would need a lot of convincing to make Lalu Prasad Yadav think different about an alliance with the Congress.

Lalu Prasad Yadav is back. After time spent in prisons and healthcare facilities, the former Chief Minister of Bihar has returned to where he thinks he belongs – amidst the people of Bihar. However, he isn’t a happy man. 

The Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) supremo is visibly irked with the Congress, for whom he once had raised his voice and stood close by.  He isn’t close with the grand old party’s new age existence anymore.

Now that he has returned, he is not someone the Congress top brass will dare to write off. On the contrary, it is Lalu Yadav who is doing the writing off, by ridiculing the worth of the Congress and its grand alliance.

The Mahagatbandhan was a failure if you read between Lalu’s words. Though he did not spell it out so clearly, his response to journalists soon after his return to the Bihar political arena hints at his total aversion to an alliance with the Congress.  

Lalu doesn’t want more ties with long-term ally

The Congress had been RJD’s long-term ally. But now Lalu Yadav believes the Congress has ceased to be a formidable force with which he could join hands. At a time of the by-elections, RJD doesn’t think Congress is a force to reckon with as an ally.

For the record, bypolls are happening this Saturday, and both the parties are in the contest at Tarapur and Kusheshwar Asthan. The rift has shown up already over the bypoll scene, with Lalu Yadav dismissing the need for an alliance.

The RJD refusing to offer a seat to the Congress leader Bhakt Charan Das came as a bold statement. Das, in the meantime, had added to the rift by blurting out that the RJD was aiding the BJP by not standing with Congress. For this too, Lalu Yadav had an answer, which went thus:  Offering a seat to a stupid guy called Bhakt Charan Das would have only resulted in the loss of even the deposit amount.

It looks like the RJD supremo isn’t willing to budge when it comes to despising Congress. The alliance with the Congress did not work out and Lalu Yadav has put all the blame on the ally. He still believes the party has nothing in it to work wonder at the electoral scenario.

Sonia Gandhi (left) with Lalu Prasad Yadav in happier times

Sonia keen on having Lalu Prasad Yadav on her side

However, this is not the case with Congress president Sonia Gandhi. She would want Lalu and his RJD to stand by the Congress party, and for her, the Congress-RJD alliance to continue is a must.

Sensing the RJD chief’s aversion towards a Congress alliance, she even called Lalu Prasad Yadav and let him know how important the alliance would be, going forward.  The Congress party leaders in Bihar aren’t very keen on staying close to the RJD, but the feelers are that Sonia Gandhi believes otherwise. Sonia in fact wants to make things right again as RJD is one of the oldest allies of Congress.

A look back at recent history would also reveal that Sonia is deeply indebted to Lalu Prasad Yadav as he is the one who stood up for her vociferously supported her when voices grew louder against an Italy-born Prime Minister in 2004 when the Congress was voted into power.

From then on, Sonia and Lalu Yadav have been good friends. If the situation now changes for the worse, Sonia will not be keen on accepting that. It would need a lot of convincing to make Lalu Prasad Yadav think different, though.

Feature Image: By Ministry of Railways (GODL-India), GODL-India,

Sanjeev Ramachandran

A journalist with 23 years of experience, Sanjeev has worked with reputed media houses such as Business Standard, The Ne More »
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