Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Tuesday resigned as “NDA’s Chief Minister” to stake claim to form a new government after being declared, unanimously, the leader of the opposition Grand Alliance.
Kumar tendered his resignation to Governor Phagu Chauhan, after a meeting of MPs and MLAs of his JD(U) where ally BJP was accused of “backstabbing”. State BJP president Sanjay Jaiswal hit back, accusing Kumar of “betraying the mandate of 2020 assembly polls for which Nitish Kumar will be punished by the people of Bihar”.
After the JD(U) meeting, Kumar drove to Raj Bhavan to tender his resignation from where he returned to his residence, stopping for a while to inform the large posse of journalists “it was decided at the party meeting that we quit the NDA. I have, therefore, resigned as the NDA’s Chief Minister”.
Shortly afterwards, Kumar drove to the residence of former chief minister Rabri Devi, just across the street, where all leaders of the Grand Alliance, comprising RJD, Congress and the Left, had gathered. Kumar, who was accompanied by JD(U) national president Rajiv Ranjan Singh alias Lalan, spent nearly half an hour at Rabri Devi’s residence. He returned along with Leader of the Opposition and his former deputy Tejashwi Yadav, who was armed with a letter of support to Kumar.
About 15 minutes later, Kumar met the Governor again to stake claim for forming a new government, this time accompanied by Yadav and senior colleagues in the JD(U) besides former Chief Minister Jitan Ram Manjhi whose four MLA-strong Hindustani Awam Morcha (HAM) has expressed “unconditional support” to the new formation.