Nitish Kumar will go down as one of the most opportunistic politicians in the history of independent India. Nitish has switched his allegiances a number of times in the recent past and from severing JD(U)’s 17-year-old ties with the BJP in 2014 to joining the Mahagathbandhan to finally making a U-turn and returning to NDA’s fold, no one knows where Nitish’s true allegiances lie but one thing is for sure, Nitish Kumar cares little about anything else except his obsession to remain in the corridors of power. As he continues to make bizarre moves in 2019, JD(U) has come up with the most defeatist campaign strategy ever in the run-up to the Bihar Legislative elections scheduled to take place around October 2020. JD(U) appears to already concede defeat with their new slogan “Kyun Kare Vichar, Thike to hai Nitish Kumar” which happens to be one of the most poorly conceived campaign slogans in recent history.
Nitish Kumar has again begun showing his true colours ever since the re-election of Prime Minister Modi. Be it the refusal of joining the Union Council of Ministers or contradicting NDA’s stance on Triple Talaq and Article 370, it seems Nitish Kumar is on the cusp of committing a political suicide of sorts. Nitish Kumar has completely failed to effectively administer Bihar in the wake of the recent floods and the encephalitis outbreak which resulted in over 100 infant mortalities. The recent Bihar floods affected more than 69 lakh people and more than 100 casualties. A report by International Water Management Institute (IWMI) had also pointed out that 73 % of the 94,163 sq km area gets flooded every year something which Nitish has failed to check despite the annual occurrence of floods which resulted in gross inconvenience to its citizens and there were reports of citizens being forced to eat rats as a means of survival. The encephalitis outbreak exposed the poor infrastructure and medicinal services in the state of Bihar as hospitals were running out of beds in Muzaffarpur due to rising cases of encephalitis. Nitish through years of deft political manoeuvring had managed to position himself as ‘Sushasan Babu’ as a counter against the Jungle Raj practised by Lalu Prasad Yadav led RJD. His image as the ‘Sushasan Babu’ of Bihar stands severely battered after his government’s inept handling of the twin tragedies.
The major reason for Congress’s downfall except for the presence of the Gandhi family is the fact that the party’s ideology has gone for a toss ever since Rahul Gandhi assumed the leadership of the party. Congress has no clue of the positioning it aspires to achieve as in one state (Kerala) it was fighting the CPI(M) and at the same time, it was in an alliance with CPI(M) in West Bengal. Congress’s desperation of retaining power by sacrificing the party’s core principles and ideology effectively sealed its fate and Nitish Kumar led JD(U) is determined to follow the footsteps of Congress. After jumping alliances numerous times in the last 5 years, Nitish Kumar is again throwing tantrums by deciding not to support both the Triple Talaq bill and the abrogation of Article 370 in Kashmir and practising minority appeasement which is directly against NDA’s stance on both the crucial issues. JD(U) has also decided to contest against the BJP in other states except for Bihar – a sign that Nitish Kumar can never be trusted.
There’s a huge political vacuum in the state of Bihar. Nitish Kumar is heading towards a defeat which is quite evident from such a defeatist slogan as the party has absolutely nothing to showcase in terms of achievements as the state has lagged even in Centre’s flagship schemes such as PM Awas Yojana and Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREA). Nitish Kumar with its defeatist campaign has the potential to even sink its allies like the BJP and the LJP. BJP would be better advised to dump Nitish at the earliest and attempt to form the government on its own as the opposition in Bihar is in a state of quandary with Lalu Prasad Yadav in jail and Tejashwi Yadav after returning from hiding is bereft of any ideas to revive the sunken ship that RJD is and the less said about the Congress the better. The BJP must act swiftly and seize this opportunity and deliver good governance in the truest form in Bihar. But for that to happen, BJP must project a face which is credible enough to take on Nitish Kumar.