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Exclusive: 'Even after withdrawing farm laws, BJP will not win elections in UP and Punjab'

Asianet Newsable's Anish Kumar caught up with the straight-talking yet widely respected Rashtriya Janata Dal supremo to understand his party's stand on the repealing of the farm laws and the impact that the decision will have on the forthcoming elections.

UP Election 2022 Exclusive Interview RJD supremo Lalu Prasad Yadav VPN
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New Delhi, First Published Nov 22, 2021, 4:10 PM IST
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Lalu Yadav has never been known to be the one to mince his words when it comes to expressing his views on issues. Asianet Newsable's Anish Kumar caught up with the straight-talking yet widely respected Rashtriya Janata Dal supremo to understand his party's stand on the repealing of the farm laws and the impact that the decision will have on the forthcoming elections. Here's what he had to say

How do you see the decision taken by the Narendra Modi government to repeal three farm laws?

It is a victory for farmers. They were sitting on protest for around a year now. The government was not listening to them. They have taken the decision to revoke the laws only after they got the feedback that their position in the upcoming assembly elections (Uttar Pradesh and Punjab) has weakened and cannot retain the power in UP. Though, even after withdrawing the laws, they are not going to win the elections. 

Farmers' Unions have demanded legislation for the Minimum Support Price. What is your take on this? 

MSP is very much essential for enhancing the rural economy. It will also help the labourers who are engaged in the farming sector. 

The Opposition, today, is fragmented. No one is ready to accept anyone’s leadership. Since you have been vocal against the BJP, how would you counter the rise of the saffron party? 

A united opposition is the need of the hour. I am certain that the political parties who are opposed to the ideas of the BJP will come together to save the country and constitution. I have talked to Mrs Gandhi (Congress interim president Sonia Gandhi) to call a meeting of all Opposition parties to discuss the situation and alliance. The people want an alternative. This government is selling everything. You are seeing what is happening with the Railways and LIC; they have sold Air India. The country is grappling with soaring prices of commodities and jobs. 

What, according to you, are the biggest challenges that the country is facing currently? 

Answer: Price rise and the attack on democracy and Constitution are the major challenges. There is a one-man show in the government. He does not consult the public. He does not even take any advice from his ministerial colleagues. 

Would the RJD be contesting in Uttar Pradesh?

The Samajwadi Party is in a strong position. My party will not contest the Uttar Pradesh assembly elections. But we will support the Samajwadi Party and would also campaign for the party in some constituencies if my health permits. 

Should the Bihar government reconsider the liquor ban in the state?

The ban on alcohol was imposed when we were together in 2016. He (Nitish Kumar) took the decision unilaterally. He did not consult us despite being in the coalition government. He took the decision and then came to me to inform me about it. I asked him how would you implement it? There is no ban in Uttar Pradesh, Nepal, Ranchi (Jharkhand) and West Bengal. We share boundaries with them. Look at the situation now in Bihar. Every day, poor people are dying of spurious liquor. Now liquor delivery is just a phone call away across the state. The situation in Bihar is out of control of Nitish Kumar. 

What is the prospect of Chirag Paswan in Bihar?  

He is also a face in Bihar and established himself despite all odds. He is working very hard for the people.

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