RJD supremo Lalu Prasad today said he will continue his efforts to engage Ram Vilas Paswan amid speculation that the LJP chief was warming up toward the BJP-led NDA. "I will continue my sincere efforts to speak to Paswan and discuss with him about formation of an Congress-RJD-LJP alliance for the general elections," Prasad told reporters here. He said that he had made sincere efforts in recent days to speak to his LJP counterpart without success and would continue to do so.
The RJD chief stonewalled all controversial questions related to the LJP President and his son.
Asked about his reaction on the CBI proposing to question Paswan in the Bokaro Steel Plant recruitment scam, Prasad said "I will rather not say anything on the issue." On Paswan's son Chirag saying that the BJP prime ministerial hopeful Narendra Modi was exonerated by the SIT in the Gujarat 2002 riots, Prasad refused to join issue. He also slammed senior BJP leader Sushil Kumar Modi saying "Modi is a vicious person who is trying to trying to create a wedge between Paswan and the UPA government by indulging in falsehood."
Prasad alleged it was the Bihar chief minister and his deputy who had worked to keep Paswan castemen out of the broad Mahadalit communities in Bihar.
The RJD supremo also attacked Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar for his efforts to form a third front and alleged that he was trying to fulfil his ambition of becoming the prime minister.
Prasad said that there were a number of other regional leaders who also nursed a similar goal and in the end all of them would try to outwit each other and defeat the ultimate goal to provide a non-Congress and non-BJP alternative at the Centre. The RJD leader also criticised Kumar for his demand for special status and recalled that the JD(U) had celebrated the submission of the Raghuram Rajan panel report prematurely.
Prasad ridiculed Kumar for blaming him for using his political connections with the UPA leadership to scuttle the move.
On the BJP chief Rajnath Singh offering to apologise to the Muslims if any wrongdoing has been done by his party against them, Prasad said that the crimes like 2002 Gujarat riots and the Babri Mosque demolition in 1992 were unforgivable.
Giving a call for keeping the Gujarat Chief Minister and the BJP away from power, he said It was only days ago that VHP president Ashok Singhal called on Hindus to produce five children in each family to counter Muslims while Modi asked for driving back Bangladeshis to their homeland.