The first phase of the highly-anticipated Bihar Assembly election is slated to be held tomorrow and with election rallies and speeches coming to a standstill for the first phase, a peculiar trend has emerged which is a stark giveaway that JDU supremo and Bihar’s CM Nitish Kumar has lost the plot and that he is on a slippery slope.
Sushasan Babu might have let down his state and people in terms of development and keeping up with the pace of times but one of his qualities that always stood out was his quiet demeanour where he rarely showed his angry side in front of the camera lens, however, that seems to have changed as an agitated Kumar is battling the prospect of losing his CM chair. There have been several instances during the election trail where Nitish has lost his calm and exploded on the stage.
Last Saturday, while addressing an election rally in Teghra in Begusarai, a section of the crowd raised pro-Lalu Prasad Yadav slogans which angered Nitish and he reacted “Agal bagal dekh lo aur samajh lo, yeh jiske liye karrahe ho, yeh log sub ko jawab denge, sabka haal theek kardenge(Look around you and understand. The crowd around you will give a befitting reply to those on whose behest you are doing all this).”
In the same rally, he went on to take jibes on Lalu Prasad Yadav and his wife Rabri Devi in a rather condescending tone, which is rarely associated with Kumar.
“Did they make any schools? Ask your baap (father) and mata (mother). When they were in power, they just kept taking… And when one went to jail, he made his wife the CM,” Nitish said.
Before the Teghra rally, Nitish was addressing a rally at Parsa in Saran district, in support of his party’s candidate Chandrika Rai who is the father-in-law of Lalu Yadav’s eldest son Tej Pratap Yadav. He fell out with Prasad’s family after Tej Pratap filed for divorce months after marrying Aishwarya in 2018.
A group of RJD supporters in the crowd started raising slogans in favour of Lalu. Three-time CM Nitish apparently got miffed and said “Yahan par ye sab halla mat karo, tumko agar vote nahi dena to mat do. Jiske lie aaye ho uska vote aur barbaad karoge (Why are you shouting here, if you do not want to vote (for me), then don’t. You will not do any favours to the candidate you are supporting by shouting here” and then asked them to get out. He went on to attack Lalu’s family for allegedly ill-treating Aishwarya.
In @NitishKumar rally crowd raised lalu Jindabaad slogans during his rally
nitish Kumar Angry on crowd & Saying
If you don’t want to vote for me, don’t do, but don’t speak such nonsense here @laluprasadrjd @yadavtejashwi @srivatsayb @Rajlakshmiyadav @INCIndia #BiharElections pic.twitter.com/W35yaaV6Tq
— Adv. Ravi Magadum ರವಿ ಮಗದುಮ್ (@ravi_magdum) October 21, 2020
At an election meeting in Sakra in Muzaffarpur district, a slipper was flung towards Nitish by some protesters while he was going towards his helicopter after completing his speech.
Rise of Chirag and the cold-shoulder by BJP in posters
JD(U) and especially Nitish Kumar is getting more and more rattled by Chirag Paswan’s meteoric rise in popularity and thus Kumar has convinced the senior leaders at the centre as well as in the state to criticize Chirag Paswan and back him as CM.
In the last few weeks, Prime Minister Modi, Home Minister Amit Shah, Bihar election in-charge Bhupendra Yadav and many other senior state leaders including party chief Sanjay Jaiswal and Deputy CM have backed Nitish Kumar and few others even called Paswan ‘vote-katua’ to convince JD(U).
Chirag Paswan has made his intentions crystal clear that he is no longer content to play the second fiddle in the state. Chirag has openly stated his unswerving loyalty to the BJP and in the forthcoming Assembly polls, his party will not contest seats where BJP will be contesting, however, it will fight against the JD(U).
Chirag is planning to cut into the JD(U) votes in the 143 seats that his party is contesting and potentially emerge as a kingmaker, in case the NDA falls short of a majority. If BJP can win 80-90 seats out of 121 it is contesting, and LJP wins 25-35 seats out of 143 it has decided to contest, they can form the government on their own without any support from Nitish Kumar’s party.
Another reason why Nitish Kumar is routinely losing his calm is the fact that BJP is subtly hinting that a ‘post-poll alliance’ landscape could be entirely different and if the push comes to shove, JDU could altogether be dumped. The recent poster controversy has ignited the belief that JDU and Kumar have fallen out of favours from NDA.
BJP’s life-size advertisements and posters across Bihar ahead of the Assembly elections feature images of Prime Minister Narendra Modi but do not have BJP’s partner and Chief Minister Nitish Kumar. The posters only have the symbols of NDA’s constituents in Bihar which comprises BJP, JD(U), HAM, and VIP.
Nitish Kumar has had his fill of ruling over the raggedy state of Bihar and it is high time that he respects the mandate of the people and steps away from the CM seat. The anger is simmering amongst the folks of Bihar and Kumar has been repeatedly at the receiving end of it and thus it would be expecting too much from anybody to remain calm in the face of such resistance. After all, Kumar is also a man in flesh and blood.
However, that being said, Kumar can still go out on a high and have his legacy and respect intact but if he tries to play dirty by constantly shouting and belittling other parties and opposition leaders, then he is no different than Lalu.