DMK chief himself may not attend celebrations; BSP and SP not invited.
New Delhi: Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar has decided to attend DMK patriarch Karunanidhi’s birthday celebrations on June 3. The event is being touted as another move to showcase Opposition unity.
While the meeting is expected to be a grand affair, M Karunanidhi himself may not be able to attend the celebrations owing to ill health.
Mr Kumar had set tongues wagging by skipping Congress president Sonia Gandhi’s Opposition unity lunch on May 26, but had attended Prime Minister Narenadra Modi’s luncheon meeting held in honour of the Mauritius Prime Minister the very next day. This had given rise to speculation that Mr Kumar was keeping his ties with the BJP warm as well. The Bihar chief minister had also praised Prime Minister Narendra Modi for the demonitisation drive.
Mr Kumar, who heads an alliance government with the Rashtriya Lok Dal and the Congress in his state, is said to be not too comfortable with RJD chief Lalu Prasad Yadav, who has recently in the limelight for I-T raids on his properties across the country.
The JD-U chief has, however, said that it was a “misinterpretation” to say that he was moving towards the BJP. “I have net Mrs Gandhi earlier. Our party was represented,” he had said.
“Mr Karunanidhi’s daughter and DMK Rajya Sabha member Kanhimozi had met Mr Kumar to invite him and he had accepted the invitation,” A senior JD-U leader told this newspaper. The invitation card mentions the name of Bihar chief minister.
In case the JD(U) decides to lean towards the BJP, it could come as a major boost for the saffronites while absence of Mr Kumar could possibly have an adverse impact on the formation of any united front against BJP.
Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi will also attend the meeting. Though the DMK had invited Mrs Gandhi as well she would not be attending due to her health issues, Congress sources said. However, the DMK has not invited either the BSP or the SP.