Nitish Goes on 'Dahi-Chura' Diplomacy; No Activity at Lalu's Residence

Nitish Kumar (center) enjoying Dahi-Chura at Vashisht Narayan Singh's residence in Patna on Sunday.

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Patna: Like Iftar parties that, besides providing ample opportunities to politicians of all colors and hues to show-off their secular credentials, also allows them to offer a glimpse into the next 'big thing in political alliance', Makar Sankranti gives politicians a second chance to confirm their commitment to secularism while also leaving everyone else wondering about the future of certain politicians who are usually termed as 'disgruntled' in the political parlays.

Sunday was no different from other Iftars and Makar Sankrantis as Chief Minister Nitish Kumar first visited the home of Janata Dal – U state President Vashisht Narayan Singh where he was accompanied by other party leaders including Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader and Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Kumar Modi.

However, what got people talking was the presence of Congress leader and former state Congress President Ashok Kumar Chowdhary at Singh's residence.

Chowdhary, though still a Congress member, has been the voice of rebels within the party that opposes party's obsession with Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) leader Lalu Prasad Yadav who is currently cooling his heels in a Ranchi jail on charges of embezzlement.

Though Chowdhary maintained his visit to Singh's place should not be viewed as anything but as a social call, the fact that he did not attend a Congress meeting of its legislators just a day ago on Saturday indicates more than just a 'social visit'.

The former Health Minister, however, used the lifeline saying in politics there never is a full stop or a beginning.'

Two other Congress legislators, Dilip Chowdhary and Munna Tiwari, were also present at Singh's party.

After savoring traditional 'dahi-chura', tilkut, and other items associated with the festival, Kumar proceeded to another event organized by Lok Janshakti Party (LJP) President and Union Minister Ram Vilas Paswan where leaders of both parties were seen feeding each other sweets with their own hands.

A third party was organized by BJP legislator Rajnish Kumar that was also graced by Nitish Kumar and Sushil Kumar Modi.

Meanwhile, there was no activity at the residence of Lalu Prasad Yadav and his wife Rabri Devi since Yadav remains behind bars in connection with the fodder scam. A few people were seen going in but reports said the family did not celebrate Makar Sankranti in the absence of the RJD leader and also because Yadav's elder sister Gangotri Devi died just over a week ago in Patna.

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