RLD president Jayant Chaudhary on Friday here signalled that he would be switching over to the NDA ahead of the Lok Sabha polls as he hailed Prime Minister Narendra Modi for his government’s decision to confer Bharat Ratna on his grandfather and former prime minister Chaudhary Charan Singh.
“Koi kasar rehti hai? Aaj main kis munh se inkaar karoon aapke sawalon ko? (Is there anything left now? How can I deny your queries today?” Chaudhary said when asked if he was ready to join hands with the BJP.
Hailing Modi, the Rashtriya Lok Dal chief said a decision which no previous governments had been able to take has been taken with the vision and dedication of the prime minister.
“It is a big day for the country. It is an emotional moment for me, it is memorable. I would like to thank President Droupadi Murmu, the Government of India and especially Prime Minister Narendra Modi as this is a part of his vision that he took this decision and conferred (Chaudhary Charan Singh) with Bharat Ratna,” Jayant Chaudhary told reporters.
“Three awards were announced, and especially the announcement of Bharat Ratna to Charan Singh sends out a big message. The sentiments of this country are attached to this decision of the government. Modi ji has shown that he understands the thinking and sentiments of the country,” he said.
Chaudhary said there was a pain in the hearts of the people in villages that such a “towering people’s leader”, who occupied such high posts, took important decisions and worked for the deprived sections had not been recognised.
“The government has taken a decision to encourage those who are not in the mainstream. I remember Chaudhary Ajit Singh on this day, it was his dream. I specifically thank PM Modi for realising that dream,” Chaudhary said.
Asked about the award being linked to contesting the upcoming Lok Sabha elections with the BJP, he said, “We win elections or lose, I am going in the coalition or not, that is not the question, today’s decision is one that will be remembered for generations. If this is the Congress party’s statement, I criticise it.” On previous Congress-led governments not honouring Charan Singh with Bharat Ratna, Chaudhary said, “India’s power has been restricted to only certain people who were part of the mainstream, that is why decisions were taken through them. In new India, all these things are changing.” He said his father and former minister Ajit Singh made a lot of effort after which a decision was taken during the UPA-II that the Lucknow Airport would be named after Charan Singh.
Pressed further on the seat-sharing understanding with the BJP, Chaudhary said, “It would be belittling to talk about elections on such a day…I have made no announcement. I just said ‘Koi kasar rehti hai?’” Earlier, Chaudhary said the Modi government had won his heart with the announcement of Bharat Ratna to former prime minister Chaudhary Charan Singh. “Dil Jeet Liya,” he posted on
The honour for Singh comes at a time the RLD, led by his grandson Jayant Chaudhary is believed to be in talks with the BJP for an alliance for the upcoming Lok Sabha polls, expected in April-May. The former prime minister died in 1987.