Political adversaries usually avoid sharing stage with each other but on October 14, there is a possibility of a unique photo-op in recent times, when rivals from different parties would come together.
The occasion is the centenary year celebration of the prestigious Patna University. Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be attending the event and along with Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, an alumni of Patna University. But the photo-op will be complete with the likely presence of RJD supremo Lalu Prasad Yadav on stage, another alumnus of the institution.
It will be the first time after the Mahagathbandhan government in the state collapsed in July this year, following CM Nitish Kumar severing ties with RJD and Congress to form a new government with BJP, that Lalu and Nitish will be seen together on one stage. Interestingly, between these two political giants of Bihar will be PM Modi.
“PM Modi will be gracing the celebrations along with the Bihar CM. Lalu Prasad has also been invited as he is also an alumni of the Patna University. However, the final decision on Lalu getting an opportunity to share stage with PM is PMO’s call as certain protocol needs to be followed in such events where PM or President is present”, said Ras Bihari Prasad Singh, Vice-Chancellor of Patna University.
The University has sent out invites to more than 5000 former students including former Union Ministers Yashwant Sinha and Shatrughan Sinha and incumbent Central Ministers like Ram Vilas Paswan, J.P Nadda, Ashwini Choubey, Upendra Kushwaha and Ravi Shankar Prasad.
Yashwant Sinha, who is now member of the BJP’s “Margdarshak Mandal” and has been extremely critical of PM Modi and BJP National President Amit Shah’s over Shah’s son, Jay Shah’s company Temple Enterprises reportedly recording a turnover of Rs. 80 crore in 2015 after it showed just Rs. 50000 turnover in 2014, will also be attending the event and is learnt to be lobbying hard along with Shatrughan Sinha to share stage with the PM.
“Yashwant Sinha and Shatrughan Sinha will also be sent invites to attend the function. It’s my responsibility to invite all students including alumni who are placed highly in bureaucracy and politically today”, said the Vice-Chancellor of Patna University. Therefore, in many senses, the PU centenary event will be keenly watched for coming together of friends (PM Modi and Nitish) and rivals (PM Modi with Lalu,Yashwant).