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LIVE: Nitish takes over as Bihar CM. Lalu Prasad threatens to go to Supreme Court over govt formation

Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar unexpectedly resigned yesterday, but hours later joined hands with the BJP to reclaim the government in a stunning political manoeuvre.

BT Online | July 27, 2017 | Updated 14:05 IST
LIVE: Nitish takes over as Bihar CM. Lalu Prasad threatens to go to Supreme Court over govt formation

In what could be called a 'Ghar wapsi' for Bihar Chief Minister, Nitish Kumar today joined the National Democratic Alliance again to form the government with the BJP. In 2013, Nitish Kumar left the 17-year old alliance with NDA, calling the then Prime Ministerial candidate Narendra Modi a communal and divisive politician.   

But cracks in Bihar's grand alliance is not sudden. The JDU Chief was not happy the way some of the parties were raising issues to attack Narendra Modi.

While other parties vehemently attacked the Prime Minister for surprised demonetisation, Nitish Kumar whole-heartily supported the Modi government's decision and also asked opposition to respect the public sentiment.

It wasn't the only event where Nitish Kumar backed Modi, he had also praised the Prime Minister for surgical strike on Pakistan and attack on corruption through benami law. He was the first person to extend his support to NDA's presidential pick Ram Nath Kovind.   

Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on many occasion had expressed his displeasure over the oppositions' failure on coming up with credible alternate narrative to take-on Prime Minister Modi. However, no party in grand alliance seemed to have paid any heed to his suggestions.

Bonhomie between Narendra Modi and Nitish Kumar is well known and has been going on for over a year. Earlier in July, Prime Minister invited Nitish Kumar for a farewell dinner for outgoing President Pranab Mukherjee.
12:35 PM: Mayawati Akhilesh Mamata, we will get them all together, it is good that Nitish has gone to the BJP: Lalu Yadav on opposition unity

12:32 PM: Considering to appeal in Supreme court against Governor's decision: Lalu Prasad Yadav

12:28 PM: Past 15-20 yrs I have been fighting cases in courts. I was sentenced in a hurry. There was a conspiracy between Nitish K & BJP: Lalu Prasad Yadav

12:22 PM: Nitish Kumar is huge opportunist. The mandate was against BJP, to throw out Modi-Shah out of Bihar. They said I was a beef eater: Lalu Yadav

12:20 PM: It is regrettable there is no Gandhiji among us to unite this country. Amit Shah & Modi's khandan of Godse - RSS killed him: Lalu Yadav

11:00 AM: After taking over as NDA's Chief Minister, Nitish Kumar to hold first cabinet meeting at 11:30.

10: 36 AM: Prime Minister Narendra Modi congratulated Nitish Kumar and Sushil Modi. Looking forward to working together for Bihar's progress and prosperity, the PM tweeted.

10: 35 AM: Bihar had given an anti-communal mandate but Nitish Kumar has gone back to the BJP for his personal political gains: Rahul Gandhi.

Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Wednesday resigned from his post after RJD legislative party decided that Deputy Chief Minister Tejashwi Yadav, against whom corruption charges have been slapped by the CBI, would not be resigning from this post.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi had congratulated Nitish Kumar for walking out of the alliance yesterday. 

Nitish Kumar thanked the Prime Minister for supporting former's decision to quit.

Nitish tendered his resignation to Bihar Governor Keshari Nath Tripathi after RJD top brass established that Tejashwi will not be leaving his post as Bihar's Deputy Chief Minister.

Here's all you need to know about Nitish Kumar and recent political developments:

Nitish Kumar became the chief minister of Bihar for the sixth time as he jilted an uncomfortable ally in the RJD and joined hands with the BJP after four years, yet again demonstrating his political manoeuvrability.

Nitish Kumar is known as the Chanakya of Bihar politics. Last evening he resigned and readily accepted BJP's support to continue in power.

After the BJP swept to power in 2014, Nitish Kumar led the 'Mahagathbandhan' (Grand Alliance) that comprised his JD(U), the RJD and the Congress to a stunning victory few thought possible after being bruised and bloodied in the 2014 Lok Sabha polls.

Nitish Kumar walked out of the NDA after 17 years of alliances on moral ground. His breakaway from the BJP in June 2013 stunned the nation. Kumar is also widely known as the 'Sushashan Babu' (Good governance man) and 'Vikas Purush', whom even critics credit with turning Bihar around.

After Lok Sabha debacle in 2014, Nitish Kumar joined hands with Lalu Prasad Yadav to stop Narendra Modi's juggernaut in Bihar in the 2015 Assembly Polls.

Lalu Prasad and Nitish Kumar sank their differences to revive an alliance that began over 40 years ago with the students agitation, which soon turned into a pan-India movement led by veteran socialist leader Jayaprakash Narayan.

Though Prasad got lucky in his very first outing in the electoral arena, winning Lok Sabha poll in 1977, it took Kumar, an electrical engineer from NIT Patna, then known as Bihar College of Engineering, eight more years to get elected to the state Assembly for the first time in 1985, after having lost twice.

Though as different as chalk and cheese, Kumar backed Prasad in bagging the chair of the Leader of Opposition in the assembly in 1989 and again when he challenged Ram Sundar Das and Raghunath Jha, nominees of Prime Minister V P Singh and Chandra Shekhar respectively, for the chief minister s post after Janata Dal came to power in Bihar in 1990.

Nitish Kumar, who won the 1989 Lok Sabha polls from Barh, shifted his focus to Delhi, getting elected to the lower house in 1991, 1996, 1998 and 1999. He became Minister of State for Agriculture in the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government and then briefly the Railway Minister in 1999. He resigned after the train tragedy at Gaisal in West Bengal in 1999 in which nearly 300 people were killed.

Kumar again became Railway Minister in 2001 and continued till 2004 during which he was credited with introducing several reforms in the public sector behemoth like Internet ticket booking and Tatkal system of instant booking.

The Godhra train burning incident in February 2002, which provided the spark that led to communal riots in Gujarat, occurred during his tenure at Rail Bhavan.

The JD(U) stalwart reworked his social engineering strategy and made a rainbow coalition of OBCs, EBCs, Mahadalits and minorities that helped him sweep Bihar in November 2005 elections, thereby uprooting 15 years of uninterrupted Lalu-Rabri rule.

(With PTI inputs)

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