Nitish Kumar to join NDA at the center on August 19

Indian villagers carry the dismantled roof of their house through floodwaters in Balimukh Ashigarh village in Morigoan district in Assam on July 4

This was their first in-person interaction since Nitish reconfigured his government in Bihar to include the BJP last month.

RCP Singh, a confidante of the chief minister, will replace Yadav as the party leader in Parliament's Upper House.

Asked whether JDU will join the Cabinet, a JDU leader said that such a decision is natural. Srivastava had opposed Nitish's decision to align with the BJP.

Earlier, Sharaad Yadav made it clear that he is still with the Grand Alliance of the RJD and Congress and that the mandate was given to the Grand Alliance and not the BJP.

These developments are being closely watched and there is speculation about a rift within the JD (U). He said that when we have formed a government in Bihar, it is natural that we also get involved in the center. Amid stifling tension in JD (U) corridors, Congress President Sonia Gandhi called for a unity meet on Friday.

Acknowledging Yadav's seniority in the party, the JD (U) leader said, "Sharadji is one of the founding members of the party, but it pains us that the path chosen by him leads to our rival, the Rashtriya Janata Dal". He said that Nitish was heading the "sarkari JD (U)", while the "JD (U) of workers" was with him.

Also, he took a dig at Yadav for calling Nitish Kumar's JD-U "sarkari party" saying: "When he (Yadav) was minister in the NDA government, then it was not a sarkari party but a revolutionary party".

Party sources said if Yadav, who has been invited to attend the national executive meeting, continues to speak against Nitish, he could be suspended soon.

Ansari said that everyone, be it opposition parties, social leaders or anyone with human values, should unite against the "divisive forces" (BJP and RSS). Today (Saturday), they removed Sharad Yadav, who was the founding member of JD-U, from the leadership of the parliamentary party.

"We have invited all those who disagree with or have differences over Nitish Kumar's decision to ally with the BJP to come for the meeting on the 19th in Patna, but I know they won't turn up", said Tyagi.

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