By Pragya Kaushika
New Delhi [India], January 30 (ANI): Lok Janshakti Party (LJP), which is part of National Democratic Alliance (NDA) at the Centre, was conspicuous by its absence at the meeting of the ruling alliance in parliament premises on Saturday.
LJP leaders said that party chief Chirag Paswan was not present at the meeting due to illness and the party was still part of NDA.
LJP secretary-general Abdul Khaliq told ANI that Chirag Paswan has been unwell for the past few days.
"He has a fever. In fact, workers from West Bengal and Assam have come and he is not being able to meet them. He is feeling weak. We had an invitation. Had he told me in advance, I would have joined the meeting," Khaliq said.
He said the party will contest the forthcoming assembly polls in West Bengal and Assam on its own as part of efforts to expand the party's base.
Chirag Paswan, who is MP from Jamui, was also not present at the all-party meeting held earlier in the day.
Asked why no other representative was present in the meetings, a senior party leader said that invites were Chirag Paswan and no one thought of representing the party on his behalf.
The LJP had contested the Bihar elections last year outside the NDA and Chirag Paswan had strongly targeted Chief Minister Nitish Kumar. The LJP could win only one seat in the assembly polls. Party patriarch Ram Vilas Paswan, the father of Chirag, had died a few days before the assembly polls in Bihar. (ANI)