Vikash Sharma

Soon after the closed-door meeting between Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik and his Bihar counterpart Nitish Kumar, the tweet by Janata Dal (United), JDU claiming that the latter has become the leader of opposition unity has brought criticism from the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).

After the meeting on Tuesday, Odisha CM Naveen Patnaik categorically stated that there was no discussion regarding any alliance. However, contrary to Patnaik's statement, the JDU, through a tweet claimed that Chief Minister Nitish Kumar has become the leader of opposition unity.

Kumar went to Odisha and met Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik and united the opposition parties without personal ambition, JDU tweeted. The BJP was quick to latch on to the seemingly contradictory statements by both the parties.

Also Read: Nitish Kumar leading Opposition unity, tweets JDU after Bihar CM meets Naveen Patnaik

Odisha BJP general secretary, Prithviraj Harichandan on Wednesday alleged that both the Chief Ministers are hiding something. It is completely a lie that no political discussions were held between them, he said.

“The Chief Ministers of the two States were involved in discussion and after the meeting, they say that no political issues were discussed, rather it was only about the construction of Bihar Bhawan in Puri. All such statements are nothing but lies,” said Harichandan.

Harichandan further said, “If BJD wants to go to the third front, it is a welcome step. If they want to go against the Narendra Modi government, they should have the courage to say this openly. It seems that BJD has just reiterated its habit of misleading people by telling lies,” Harichandan added.

Responding to BJP leader’s allegations, BJD vice-president Prasanna Acharya said, "Since 2009, the BJD is maintaining a policy of equidistance. Whenever any CM or leader comes, CM Naveen Patnaik greets and welcomes them. JDU and BJD are both different parties and only JDU can tell about its tweet.”

According to Acharya, BJD supremo and CM Naveen Patnaik had clearly stated that, “It was just a courtesy visit.”

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