Nitish Kumar to take oath as Bihar CM for 8th time today

Guwahati: Ending the alliance with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Janata Dal (United) leader Nitish Kumar is likely to take oath as Bihar’s Chief Minister again today while while Tejashwi Yadav would become the deputy CM.

If returned to power, this will be the eighth time when Nitish Kumar will be sworn in as Chief Minister of Bihar.

Political Carrer:

In 1989, Kumar supported Janata Dal and backed Lalu Prasad Yadav as leader of the opposition in Bihar Assembly. However, in 1994, he floated the Samata Party with George Fernandes.

In 1996, after joining hands with the BJP, he became a minister in the Atal Bihari Vajpayee cabinet.

In March 2000, Nitish had served as the Chief Minister of the state for little over seven days, but he resigned after taking the oath as the NDA and allies had 151 seats. RJD on the other hand had 159, so both fell short of the required 163 mark.

In 2003, the Samata Party merged with Janata Dal of Sharad Yadav, while its alliance continued with the BJP. In the same year, the Janata Dal (United) was formed.

In 2005, in alliance with BJP, JD(U) came back to power as an NDA member.

In 2010, Nitish’s party came to power along with BJP as ally and he again became the Chief Minister.

In 2013, the JDU leader ended his party’s ties with the BJP after 17 years. Later, he won a trust vote with support from Congress but in 2014 he stepped down. However, within a year, Kumar was back as the chief minister with support from the RJD and the Congress.

In 2017, the state assembly polls were won by the Grand Alliance of the JD(U), Congress and RJD. But the alliance collapsed in just two years over Deputy CM Tejashwi Yadav’s name that came up in a money laundering case. Nitish ended the alliance and resigned as the chief minister and was back in office in less than 24 hours after getting support from the BJP.

In 2020, Kumar took oath as the Bihar Chief Minister for the seventh time with the support of the BJP. In the elections, NDA has secured a 125-seat majority in the 243-seat strong Bihar Legislative Assembly of which BJP won on 74 seats, JD(U) on 43 while eight seats were won by two other NDA constituents. The RJD, on the other hand, emerged as the single-largest party with 75 seats while the Congress only won 19 of the 70 seats it had contested on.

Kumar ended his alliance with the Bharatiya Janata Party-led (BJP) National Democratic Alliance and rejoined hands with RJD on a day of rapidly changing political developments in Bihar. Seven parties including 164 MLAs along with independent MLA in our Mahagathbandhan, said Nitish Kumar at a joint presser with RJD’s Tejashwi Yadav after meeting Bihar Governor.

According to a tweet by Kumar’s new alliance partner RJD, the swearing-in ceremony will be held at 2 pm today at Raj Bhavan.

While the RJD tweet did not mention any names, it is widely expected that Nitish Kumar would be the chief minister while Tejashwi Yadav would become his deputy. 

Earlier on 9 August, Kumar, 71, submitted his resignation as the chief minister heading the NDA coalition, said he submitted a list of 164 MLAs to Governor Phagu Chauhan. The effective strength of the state Assembly is 242 and the magic figure is 122. According to sources, the the new cabinet will have representatives from the RJD and Congress besides JD(U). The Left parties are likely to give outside support to the new government “retaining their independent identity”. 

Besides upsetting political calculations, the move is seen as significant as it diminishes the clout of the BJP in a key state in the Hindi-speaking heartland from where most of its legislators come ahead of the 2024 general elections, which pundits expect it to otherwise win. Kumar told newspersons outside the Raj Bhavan, “It was decided at the party meeting that we quit the NDA. I have, therefore, resigned as the NDA’s Chief Minister”.

Meanwhile, LJP leader Chirag Paswan accused Nitish Kumar of “insulting” the people’s mandate once again and demanded the imposition of President’s Rule in the state followed by fresh elections. Paswan also came out in support of the BJP and said the saffron party had accepted everything that Kumar wanted as chief minister and even compromised on its own policies.

(With inputs from agencies)



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