Backed by Modi’s BJP, Nitish to seek trust vote in Bihar assembly on Friday
Friday was to be the first day of Bihar assembly’s monsoon session but now Nitish Kumar will have to prove his majority in the Houseindia Updated: Jul 27, 2017 18:59 IST
Nitish Kumar, who was sworn in as the Bihar chief minister for the sixth time on Thursday, barely 18 hours after his surprise resignation sank the so-called grand alliance, will seek a trust vote on Friday. (LIVE UPDATES)
Governor Keshari Nath Tripathi, who was admitted to the hospital on Wednesday as the political drama played out in Patna, returned to the Raj Bhawan late in the night and administered the oath of office to Kumar at 10am.
Senior BJP leader Sushil Kumar Modi will be Kumar’s deputy and was the only minister to take oath.
Tripathi asked Kumar to prove his majority in the 243-member Bihar assembly within two days. The cabinet would be expanded after the vote, sources said.
Kumar’s resignation ended his Janata Dal (United)’s two-year alliance with the Rashtriya Janata Dal and the Congress and saw him forge yet another partnership with the BJP, four years after he walked out of the National Democratic Alliance.
Numbers seem to favour Kumar. The JD (U) has 71 MLAs, the BJP 53, other NDA partners five and four independents, together they make up a bloc of 133, 10 more than the majority mark.
But not all in the JD(U) are happy with Kumar’s switch. A couple of senior leaders could find a place in Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s team, which is expected to be reshuffled after August 11.
The move would make the “alliance” complete at the Centre and the state, sources said, adding it would also check rumblings within the JD (U).
Friday was to be the first day of Bihar assembly’s monsoon session but now Kumar will have to prove his majority in the House, which will look very different, on the day.
The RJD and Congress MLAs, who occupied treasury benches, will sit in the opposition. The BJP and its allies will be back on treasury benches with the JD(U).
Kumar presented a letter of support from 131 members, including two independents, a Raj Bhawan communique issued at 2:51am said.
The BJP sent party secretary Anil Jain and health minister JP Nadda for the swearing-in.
Talking to mediapersons, Nadda said the BJP was for stability and development in Bihar. “Nitish Kumar’s step is a courageous one and will send a positive message against corruption... We will contribute to the state’s development with him,” he said.