New Delhi: The seat sharing in Bihar for the forthcoming Lok Sabha elections was announced on Sunday by the National Democratic Alliance (NDA). In a press conference held in Patna, it was announced that the BJP and Janata Dal United (JD-U) will be contesting for 17 seats and the Lok Janashakti Party (LJP) for six seats. Present in the press conference were BJP president Nityanand Rai, JD-U president Vashishtha Narayan Singh and LJP president Pashupati Kumar Paras. 

The BJP will be contesting from Paschim Champaran, Purvi Champaran, Madhuvani, Saran, Sheohar, Darbhanga, Begusarai, Pataliputra, Patna Sahib, Ujiarpur, Buxar, Arariya, Maharganj, Arrah, Muzaffarpur and Sasaram Aurangabad.

The JD-U will be contesting from Sitamarhi, Jhanjarpur, Kishanganj, Supaul, Valmiki Nagar, Purnia, Madhepura, Katihar, Siwan, Bhagalpur, Gopalganj, Munger, Karakat, Banka, Nalanda, Gaya and Jahanabad.

The seats for LJP are from Hajipur, Vaishali, Khagaria, Jamui, Vaishali and Nawada. In a surprising turn of events minister of state Giriraj Singh was uprooted from his Nawada seat in favour of LJP.

Begusarai has traditionally been a left-dominated seat, once called the ‘Leningrad of India’ but had changed stripes to support PM Narendra Modi.

Top BJP sources also told MyNation that the seat was rather full of claimants as Rajya Sabha MP and Delhi University professor Rakesh Sinha too was interested in contesting from Begusarai.

Sources also told MyNation that the Bihar state unit of the BJP had suggested the high command to give away Nawada seat to the LJP.

Another casualty from within the BJP is former union minister and national spokesperson Shahnawaz Hussain who had lost the 2014 polls from Bhagalpur.  The seat has gone into JD(U)’s kitty this time and in all likelihood Hussain would not be fielded this time around.

According to sources, out of the total 17 constituencies, candidatures for 14 have already been decided.

Sources said that Ram Kripal Yadav was expected to contest from Pataliputra; Union minister Ravi Shankar Prasad from the seat in Patna Sahib which is currently held by Shatrughan Sinha; Rajiv Pratap Ruddy from Chhapra; Sanjay Jaiswal from Bettiah; agriculture minister Radha Mohan Singh from Motihari; power minister RK Singh from Arrah; Ashwini Kumar Chaubey from Buxar; Rama Devi from Sheohar; Ajay Nishad from Muzaffarpur; party state unit president Nityanand Rai from Ujiarpur; Putul Devi from Banka; Janardan Prasad Sigriwal from Maharajganj; and RLSP MLA Lalan Paswan from Sasaram. 

Candidates for three the seats of Darbhanga, Madhubani and Araria are undecided so far. 

The election will be held in Bihar in May, the seventh and final phase. In a meeting held at BJP headquarters on saturday, candidates' names for ten states including Bihar, Maharashtra and Uttarakhand was discussed. Present in the meeting of the Central Election Committe were Prime Minister Narendra Modi, BJP party president Amit Shah, external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj, home minister Rajnath Singh, deputy chief minister of Bihar Sushil Kumar Modi and Nityanad Rai BJP state president.