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Nitish to take oath as CM of NDA legislative party on Thursday

July 27, 2017 02:06 AM

Patna: On a day of fast-changing political developments, JD(U) chief Nitish Kumar was elected the leader of the NDA Legislature Party hours after he resigned as the chief minister of Bihar.

Besides, other BJP allies – LJP (2), RLSP (2) and Jitan Ram Manjhi’s HAM (1) – are likely to join the government. “The BJP’s letter of unconditional support to Nitish has been submitted to the governor by Bihar BJP chief Nityanand Rai, said Sushil Modi.

Nitish quit after ally and RJD chief Lalu Prasad ruled out his son and Deputy Chief Minister Tejashwi Yadav’s resignation, drawing the curtains on the fortnight-long political uncertainty in Bihar, and with it the end of the JD(U)-RJD-Congress Grand Alliance.

Nitish was apparently peeved over Tejashwi not quitting despite the CBI lodging an FIR against him in a corruption case. 

Nitish’s election as the NDA leader took place at a meeting of the JD(U) and BJP legislators at the chief minister’s official residence – 1, Aney Marg.



He is likely to be sworn in as chief minister on Thursday evening, while senior BJP leader Sushil Modi is tipped to be his deputy – a post he held until June 2013 before Nitish snapped ties with the BJP.

The BJP hurriedly extended its support to Nitish to thwart any move by Lalu whose RJD is the single-largest party in the Assembly. The BJP with 53 MLAs and the JD(U)’s 71 legislators together can easily cross the halfway mark of 122 in the 243-member Assembly. 

Besides, other BJP allies – LJP (2), RLSP (2) and Jitan Ram Manjhi’s HAM (1) – are likely to join the government. “The BJP’s letter of unconditional support to Nitish has been submitted to the governor by Bihar BJP chief Nityanand Rai, said Sushil Modi.

The developments took place as Lalu left for Ranchi to appear before a trial court for three consecutive days in connection with the fodder scam cases.

‘Tried to save alliance’
Earlier in the day, Nitish said, “I have tendered my resignation to Governor Keshari Nath Tripathi as it was not possible for me to continue as Bihar CM under the present circumstances.” “By doing this, I have listened to my conscience,” he said soon after coming out of Raj Bhavan. 

Reiterating that he would never compromise on his assiduously-cultivated image of a clean politician, Nitish said, “I, on my part, tried my level best that Tejashwi should come clean on the charges made by the CBI and other investigating agencies. I spoke to Congress leaders too. But no amount of persuasion and mediation could make RJD leaders change their decision. We, the Socialists, have been told by our mentors that the focus should be on governance, not greed.... Still, I don’t want to blame anyone. I was not comfortable working in this environment, so I have put in my papers.”

The resignation came after a meeting of JD(U) MLAs at Nitish’s residence.

In a related development, Governor Tripathi was admitted to Indira Gandhi Institute of Medical Science when he complained of a nose infection late on Wednesday evening.

 

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