Bihar govt wins trust vote amid BJP boycott; Nitish Kumar hits out at Centre

Updated on Aug 24, 2022 09:10 PM IST

After winning the trust vote, Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar said that he will work with the Opposition across the country to put up a united show for the 2024 general elections

Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar’s JD(U) snapped ties with the BJP on August 9 and joined hands with the Rashtirya Janata Dal (RJD), Congress and other parties to form a new government the next day. (ANI)
Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar’s JD(U) snapped ties with the BJP on August 9 and joined hands with the Rashtirya Janata Dal (RJD), Congress and other parties to form a new government the next day. (ANI)

The new government in Bihar won the trust vote amid a boycott by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in the Vidhan Sabha on Wednesday with chief minister Nitish Kumar saying that he will work with the Opposition across the country to put up a united show for the 2024 general elections.

In the House, deputy Speaker Maheshwar Hazari wanted to go in for voting, but the BJP leaders returned to protest. The BJP’s Tarakeshwar Prasad said that the House could not run like this. However, the deputy Speaker insisted on division after Parliamentary affairs minister Vijay Kumar Choudhary said it should be done to show to the people that our claim of majority was correct. Nitish Kumar submitted support of 164 MLAs from seven parties to the governor at the time of staking claim.

Speaking in favour of the motion, Kumar claimed that the BJP had gained in the state due to its association with the Janata Dal-United (JD-U). “Today, all kinds of things are being propagated about Gaya (where he visited the revered Vishnupad Temple with his minister Israel Mansuri), but it is the same place where even the minorities voted for the BJP in 2010 due to my efforts. They forget. In 2020, I was not ready to accept the CM’s chair, but under pressure I had to accept it and after that a situation was created that all my party leaders started insisting that I should sever ties. An attempt was made to destroy the JD-U,” he added.

Earlier, BJP leader Tarkishore Prasad accused Nitish Kumar of sacrificing state’s progress at the altar of his personal ambition. “In 2013 also, the ambition of becoming PM had made him walk away and again in 2022 he has done the same. But the reality is that a how a party or a leader, who could never form a government on his own even in the state, can have unrealistic ambition of becoming the PM. Having ambition is not bad, but unrealistic ambitions and crass opportunism harms democracy. In 2014 Lok Sabha polls, the people of Bihar had reduced him to just two seats and he had to resign,” he added.

Kumar said that he will work with the Opposition across the country to put up a united show for 2024 elections. “Leaders from the across the country are calling up to tell me that I have taken the right decision. The 2024 results will show. Merely on false narrative and publicity, the country cannot progress. We have celebrated 75th year of Independence and so much was announced, but what have the country achieved. These are the people who will not spare even Bapu, as they had no role in the freedom struggle. They only believe in fanning turmoil and Hindu-Muslim hatred in the society for their gains, but we will together fight against it,” he added.

Kumar said that he had nothing against the BJP leaders in Bihar, but the way all the senior ones like Sushil Kumar Modi, Prem Kumar, Nannd Kishore Yadav, Vinod Narayan Jha, Ram Narayan Mandal etc., who worked with him, were side lined, it became apparent what the BJP was up to. “Still, I did not say anything and treated it as their internal matter. But the way things shaped it became increasingly difficult. I have worked with former PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee also and at that time leaders like LK Advani, Murli Manohar Joshi listened to me and accepted our pleas. I asked to convert the Bihar College of Engineering into an NIT (National Institute of Technology) and it was done. But when I requested Prime Minister Narendra Modi to convert Patna University into a central university, it was rejected,” he said.

The chief minister alleged that the present dispensation at the Centre was only into publicity and busy in taking credit for others’ work as they had nothing to show as their own. “I started 7 Resolves and continued with it despite change of government over the years. Bihar started the scheme for tap water to every home, but the Centre started it later. I was asked to accept the Centre’s scheme, but I said no, as it is a state scheme. The BJP leaders of the state know the progress the state has made in different fields, but they can only get noticed when they attack me. I wish them good luck,” he added.

In a sudden turn of events in Bihar, chief minister Nitish Kumar’s JD(U) snapped ties with the BJP on August 9 and joined hands with the Rashtirya Janata Dal (RJD), Congress and other parties to form a new government the next day. The ruling Mahagathbandhan or Grand Alliance, comprising seven parties, has the support of 164 members in the 243-member House against the BJP’s 77.

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  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Arun Kumar is Senior Assistant Editor with Hindustan Times. He has spent two-and-half decades covering Bihar, including politics, educational and social issues.

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