Nitish Kumar, the chief minister of Bihar, has resigned from his position and has joined the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) after a fallout with the Mahagathbandhan alliance. Kumar, who belongs to the Janata Dal (United), had formed a government with the RJD, Congress, and Left parties in 2022 and accused the BJP of trying to split his party.
The Janata Dal (United) holds 45 seats in the 243-member Bihar assembly, while the BJP and other NDA allies have 82 seats. A coalition needs 122 lawmakers to form a government, and the RJD, Congress, and Left parties have a total of 114 seats. Kumar’s party faced a decline in recent years, while the BJP’s count rose. Kumar blamed the BJP for influencing the Lok Janshakti Party leader, Chirag Paswan, to field candidates against JD(U) in multiple constituencies.
Kumar also felt uneasy with his deputy chief ministers, Renu Devi and Tarkishore Prasad, as he did not share the same rapport as he did with Sushil Kumar Modi, his former deputy CM. The 72-year-old politician expressed dissatisfaction with the Mahagathbandhan and the INDIA bloc, as he felt that his efforts were not adequately recognized. He alluded to the strained relationship within the alliance and his party, which ultimately led to his resignation.
Nitish Kumar’s political journey has been characterized by shifting alliances. He resigned from power in 2013 but returned a year later after forging new alliances with the RJD and Congress. The grand alliance won the 2015 assembly elections but collapsed two years later. Kumar then rejoined the NDA in 2017 but grew disillusioned with the BJP after the 2020 assembly polls. He re-emerged in the Mahagathbandhan in 2022 and aspired to build a united opposition front against the BJP.
However, disagreements over seat-sharing arrangements and leadership roles within the opposition front caused further frustration for Kumar. Despite being seen as the architect of the INDIA alliance, his efforts were not fully acknowledged, leading to his decision to step down as chief minister and reunite with the BJP.
With Nitish Kumar’s resignation, Bihar is once again poised for a political realignment. The coming days will reveal the future of the state government and the dynamics between the various political parties.
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