Ending all the speculations regarding the stability of the alliance between BJP and JD(U) in Bihar, Bihar Deputy Chief Minister, Sushil Kumar Modi while speaking in the Bihar assembly has clearly put out the plans of NDA for the upcoming assembly elections stating, “There is a lot of speculation (on BJP-JDU alliance), and I would like to inform the people of Bihar through this house that the NDA will contest the polls under the leadership of Nitish Kumar,”
Taking aim at the main opposition party to the NDA in Bihar the RJD, Sushil Modi also said that I’m announcing this so that there is no confusion… who will board a sinking ship,” he further added “A boat that is full of holes, an alliance that managed to win only one seat – who will have any confidence in that?” taking aim at the alliance between RJD and Congress who only managed to win on just one Parliamentary constituency in the 2019 General elections, while the BJP-JD(U)-LJP had fared successfully on 39 out of the 40 seats.
Nonetheless, by these comments, Sushil Modi has surely indicated the condition of opposition in Bihar. However, Sushil Modi has also delivered a subtle warning to ally Nitish Kumar as well through this statement. Comments by Sushil Modi are an indication from the BJP that if Nitish Kumar desires to break off from the alliance, he may do so, however, the option remaining from him will be that of a “sinking ship” which is “full of holes”.
Despite getting political benefits from the alliance in the 2019 general Elections, Nitish Kumar has surely been observant and critical of BJP’s rise in the state. However, with the elections over these reservations about the BJP have been translating into bizarre moves by the JD(U) be it the controversy arising after JD(U) refused to join the Union Cabinet over demands of multiple places in the Union Council of Ministers or the hasty Bihar cabinet expansion . According to media reports JD (U) was offered one cabinet minister rank in the run-up to the formation of the council, however, JD (U) given its expectation of getting more than one seat in the Union Council of Ministers had declined that offer.
After failing to fulfill its demand of multiple seats in the Union Council of Ministers, in a move to ramp up the pressure, Nitish Kumar had initiated a cabinet expansion in which all the 8 posts were given to the JD (U). Bihar CM has also so far refused to reprimand Prashant Kishore, vice president of the JD(U) for working with NDA nemesis Mamata Banerjee and now JD(U) has proclaimed that it will be contesting elections in upcoming state assembly polls in Delhi, Haryana, Jharkhand and Jammu and Kashmir independent of the NDA.
Moreover looking at the political climate in Bihar, it would surely amount to political self-harm for Nitish Kumar led JD (U) if it decides to jump alliances. By these comments, BJP has again reiterated its firm position in the political scene in Bihar, and along with the opposition parties also given a clear message to its alliance partner JD (U), which had been wary of BJP’s growth in Bihar. In the absence of Lalu Yadav, Tejaswi Yadav has also been looking for different alliance option in form of JD(U) as RJD’s alliance with Congress had evidently failed to deliver at all.