Interesting times for Nitish and Bihar


By Tarun Pratap

New Delhi: Nitish Kumar was unanimously elected the leader of the  grand alliance on Saturday marking the beginning of an ensuing challenging if not tricky tenure for him.

Nitish Kumar, as he sits on the throne of Bihar for the third consecutive term, will enjoy the support of the comeback man of Indian politics, ironically whom he had ousted earlier.

Lalu Prasad Yadav’s RJD emerged as the most successful party bagging 80. Lalu is expected to have a fair say in the administration process.

Despite having major differences, both Lalu and Nitish  got united to stop the BJP juggernaut. And if they are to run the government successfully, they will need to have more common developmental agendas.

Nitish Kumar made seven commitments and it will not be easy to fulfill those with BJP in the center and ready to pounce on the opportunity to lambaste Nitish’s faults. Nitish will need almost three lakhs crores to complete his seven election pledges including 35 per cent reservation for women in the government and the jobs to youth.

The grand alliance has the clear majority as of now but if anyone backs out at some point then a new equation will come into place. It will be the BJP who would be in the driver’s seat and either of RJD or JD-U will need the support to form the government.

Nitish and Lalu know each other very well, their entente goes way back, they have come circles but issues in politics are never resolved and BJP tried to create a rift by publishing a video of Nitish Kumar with a tantric who was saying things against Lalu.

Moreover, the two sons of Lalu are in the contention of ministerial posts and if they get one, it will provide a huge boost to RJD which had remained sidelined for quite a time.

While Lalu’s supporters are happy to see him back, a faction was however left speechless. Lalu still has the corruption charges but as the ‘communal’ forces had to be thwarted, his comeback became the need of the hour.

There is no denying the fact that Nitish Kumar has brought in developmental changes in the last 10 years for Bihar. People have seen the change over the years but will this sustain in the next five years? Especially given that the focus of the two stalwarts from Bihar has shifted now. the paradigm shift in focus can be attributed to the secular and communal powers talks that have overshadowed agendas of development.