Wary Cong deploys 2 leaders in Bihar to stall poaching bids

New Delhi:  Wiser after the Madhya Pradesh and the Rajasthan experiences, the Congress has deployed party leaders Randeep Singh Surjewala and Avinash Pandey to Bihar ahead of the November 10 to take quick decisions to stall MLA poaching bids.

Congress sources said that the party was wary of the poaching attempts by the National Democratic Alliance and the two leaders would be stationed in Patna to take quick decisions in case of a hung Assembly or close election results.

While Surjewala was Chairman of the Election Management Committee, Pandey was Screening Committee chief ahead of the Bihar Assembly elections that concluded on November 7.

Though Congress state President Madan Mohan Jha termed the presence of the two AICC leaders as “routine affair”, party sources said that the Congress is conscious of the situation it faced after the Assembly elections in Manipur and Goa, wherein it could not form the governments despite emerging as the single largest party.

They pointed out that recent events in Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan, wherein Congress MLAs resigned or voiced their rebellion against the party leadership, had made the party more cautious.

Though the exit polls have predicted a win for the Grand Alliance, the Congress doesn’t want to take chance this time, the sources remarked.

Some exit polls on Saturday predicted a thumping victory for the Mahagathbandhan (Grand Alliance) comprising the Rashtriya Janata Dal, the Congress and the Left parties, dislodging the Nitish Kumar-led NDA government with more than two third majority in the 243-member Bihar Assembly.

According to the CNN News 18-Today’s Chanakya and the India Today-Axis My India exit poll predictions, the Mahagathbandhan is set to dislodge the NDA government with a clear majority.

The CNN News 18-Today’s Chanakya predicted that the Grand Alliance is likely to win 180 out of 243 seats while the NDA may get 55 seats. It predicted that the others may get 4 to 12 seats in the Bihar elections.

The simple majority mark in Bihar Assembly is 122.