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Lok Sabha 2024: Jayant Chaudhary's Rashtriya Lok Dal formally joins NDA Election 2024
Photo courtesy: twitter.com/JPNadda

Lok Sabha 2024: Jayant Chaudhary's Rashtriya Lok Dal formally joins NDA

India Blooms news Service | @indiablooms | 03 Mar 2024, 01:08 am

New Delhi: As the BJP released its initial roster of 195 candidates for the Lok Sabha elections, the National Democratic Alliance (NDA), which it heads received a significant boost as Jayant Chaudhary's Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD) officially joined the coalition.

The Uttar Pradesh-centric party, previously aligned with the opposition INDIA alliance, had been hinting at this transition for a while.

Posting photos of Chaudhary meeting him and Home Minister Amit Shah, BJP President JP Nadda said in Hindi on X, “I met RLD chief Jayant Chaudhary in the presence of Amit Shah. I heartily welcome his decision to join the NDA family. Under the leadership of PM Narendra Modi, you will make an important contribution to the journey towards a developed India and the development of Uttar Pradesh. Ab ki baar NDA 400 paar.”

Speculation about a potential alliance between the BJP and the RLD had been doing in the rounds for some time, gaining credibility particularly after the announcement of the Bharat Ratna for Chaudhary's grandfather, former Prime Minister Chaudhary Charan Singh, on February 9th.

The RLD chief had welcomed the honour, writing, "Dil jeet liya mera (They have won my heart).

The RLD becomes the second party to depart from the INDIA bloc, following the Janata Dal United led by Nitish Kumar.

While the party and its leader may not get the same level of attention as the JDU and Kumar, their exit poses a setback for the opposition, particularly as they are a significant player in the crucial state of Uttar Pradesh.

Out of the 80 Lok Sabha seats in the state, the BJP secured 62 in 2019, a slight decrease from the 71 obtained in 2014, yet it still contributed to the national tally of 303 seats.

This election cycle, the BJP aims to secure 370 seats independently and 400 for the NDA. The RLD, with its Jat support base, could assist in edging closer to these targets.

In its initial list of 195 candidates released on Saturday, the BJP designated 51 from Uttar Pradesh. Speculation suggests that the RLD might contest two Lok Sabha seats and secure two ministerial positions in the Yogi Adityanath cabinet.

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