Patna: After several attempts to establish ownership of the Janata Dal – U and its election symbol of arrow, Sharad Yadav, the former party President and disgruntled ex-Nitish ally gave up on his various claims after the Election Commission once again rejected his plea to hand over the 'arrow' to him saying he would soon form a new party of his own to 'teach a lesson' to Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar.
After being repeatedly snubbed by the Election Commission that ruled that the real leader of the JD-U was indeed Nitish Kumar and the symbol of arrow belonged to him, Yadav's surrogate Arun Srivastava announced that the Sharad faction of the party would form a new party after the Gujarat polls with Sharad Yadav as its President.
Srivastava further said that the JD-U's only legislator in Gujarat Chhotu Vasava, a tribal leader, will contest the Gujarat elections under the banner of a new party named Bharatiya Tribal Party, BTP, with auto-rickshaw as its election symbol.
"Sharad supporters will hold a convention after the Gujarat polls to form a new party. Until then, however, our candidates will contest seven seats in Gujarat under the banner of BTP in alliance with the Congress," he said.
Nitish-led JD-U with Sharad Yadav as its President was in alliance with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) until Kumar decided to break away from the NDA coalition in 2013 only to join hands with his sworn enemy Lalu Prasad Yadav and Congress. In 2015, Kumar formed the new government with Yadav and Congress what came to be known as the Grand Alliance of Bihar. This rag-tag coalition of politically ambitious leaders, however, crumbled under its own weight as Kumar pulled out of it earlier this year only to go back to the NDA despite strong protest by his own President Sharad Yadav.