India

What BJP Says On Huge Crowds At Tejashwi Yadav's Rallies

What BJP Says On Huge Crowds At Tejashwi Yadav's Rallies

Bihar Election: It is apparent that even the BJP leadership is keeping a close watch on the rallies.

New Delhi:

The huge crowds at opposition leader Tejashwi Yadav's rallies are "natural" and "happened even during his father Lalu Yadav's rallies" but the picture will change when Prime Minister Narendra Modi starts campaigning in Bihar for the election starting next week, top BJP sources said today.

With a week to go before the polls, images of massive crowds at the rallies of Tejashwi Yadav, the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) chief and the opposition mahagatbandhan's chief ministerial face, are believed to have caused some trepidation among Chief Minister Nitish Kumar's supporters.

It is apparent that even the BJP leadership is keeping a close watch on the rallies.

"It happens every time," BJP sources said, downplaying Tejashwi Yadav's packed meetings.

"Earlier, Lalu Yadav's meetings were crowded and the main reason for this is the RJD's strong MY (Muslim-Yadav) vote bank. This vote bank is outspoken and mobilized," the sources said.

"It is natural for such a crowd to gather in areas of RJD domination."

The BJP assesses that the crowds may also turn into votes for the RJD. In 2015, the party notes, the main reason for the Lalu Yadav-led RJD's good performance was the addition of Dalits and backward castes to the "MY" equation.

But it is banking on PM Modi's rallies changing the atmosphere.

"The joint meetings of the PM and Chief Minister Nitish Kumar will show the unity and strength of the NDA," sources said.

"This time, the forward castes, Dalits and backward castes are with the NDA," they asserted.

Tejashwi Yadav and his party men ascribe the crowds to Bihar voters' wish for change, development, employment and jobs. "This sea of people is standing for change, development, employment and jobs in Bihar. The incompetent NDA government of 15 years has ruined Bihar. Humbled and grateful to receive rousing reception across the Bihar. Such an electrifying crowd in Goh assembly, Aurangabad," Tejashwi tweeted yesterday.

His promise of 10 lakh jobs if the mahagatbandhan is voted to power is seen to have rattled Nitish Kumar, who mocked him as "ïnexperienced" and questioned whether he would get the money for all these jobs "from jail or by printing fake money".

BJP sources acknowledge the resentment over jobs, especially among migrants forced to return to their villages during the nationwide lockdown. They also point at the "boredom" factor after 15 years of Nitish Kumar's rule.

"Public awareness on the issue of employment is natural. The concerns will be answered on this issue," the leaders said, adding that it was wrong to fault the Bihar government on migrants after it had taken steps to alleviate their suffering.