Janata Dal (United) press conference in Itanagar, Arunachal Pradesh Credit: EastMojo image

Itanagar: The Janata Dal (United) on Wednesday expressed the party’s view on marking its national presence by contesting the 2019 Lok Sabha elections in several states, including Arunachal Pradesh.

Led by Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar, JD(U) is a centre-left Indian political party with political presence mainly in Bihar and Jharkhand. The party was formed with the merger of the Sharad Yadav faction of the Janata Dal, the Lokshakti Party and the Samta Party on October 30, 2003.

Addressing media persons at a city hotel in Itanagar, Afaque Ahmad Khan, JD(U) general secretary and in-charge of Northeast states, said that the party had taken the decision to contest the assembly election in Arunachal and other states during its national executive meeting held in Patna, Bihar on Monday.

Khan, without naming anyone, said that many leaders from Arunachal have made contacts with his party expressing keen interest to contest in the ensuing assembly election with a JD(U) ticket.

“Though many have approached us, we will look into the credentials of the candidates,” Khan said that the names of the candidates would be put in the public domain in the appropriate time.

Denying any pre- or post-alliance with other political parties for the election, Khan informed that, he along with the JD(U)’s Northeast Executive Council chairman NSN Lotha are in the capital to attend the two-day membership drive of the party and work on making policies to participate in the ensuing polls.

Lotha said that it was his party which was the the first to oppose the contentious Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016 as the JD(U) believes in secularism. “The bill was anti-secular, thus the party president and present chief minister of Bihar, Nitish Kumar opposed it,” he said.

Lotha also condemned the Arunachal Pradesh government for allegedly experimenting with the sentiments and future of the indigenous people by allegedly bringing in the permanent resident certificate (PRC) issue into existence.

“We seriously consider PRC as a misdeed imposed on the indigenous people. Today you (government) issue an order on PRC and the next day you revoke it after losing precious lives. An immature act of this sort was never expected from a BJP-led state government,” Lotha said.

The NEEC chairman added that, JD(U) though is national in outlook, it is, however, totally regional in its approach.

Top priority is given to regional issues in our party. If JD(U) is given a chance to form a government in Arunachal, we will ensure that the state is ruled and run by its own people, he said.

The JD(U)’s motto for the assembly election in Arunachal is ‘Development with Justice’.

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