Bihar Assembly polls | NDA overcomes stiff challenge to retain power in Bihar

The ruling coalition received 125 seats in the 243-member State Assembly in opposition to 110 clinched by the Opposition Grand Alliance.

Surmounting anti-incumbency of 15 years, a mutinous former ally, and a spirited challenge from a resurgent Opposition that rose from its ashes like proverbial phoenix after the 2019 Lok Sabha ballot debacle, Nitish Kumar- led NDA was again in power in Bihar on Wednesday with a slender majority.

The ruling coalition received 125 seats in the 243-member State Assembly in opposition to 110 clinched by the Opposition Grand Alliance to pave the way in which for a fourth successive time period for Mr. Kumar in workplace however with diminished clout following a debilitating slide in the variety of JD(U) lawmakers that got here down to 43 from 71 in 2015.

Mr. Kumar was then a accomplice in the Grand Alliance which included Lalu Prasad’s RJD and the Congress.

Its defeat however, the RJD, whose marketing campaign Tejashwi Yadav, the youthful son and inheritor to occasion supremo Lalu Prasad helmed, emerged as the one largest occasion with 75 seats. The BJP, which led the desk for a number of hours through the counting that dragged on for over 16 hours, completed second with a tally of 74 seats.

Despite the droop in numbers, Mr. Kumar, who was declared the NDA’s Chief Ministerial candidate by the BJP brass, together with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and occasion chief J P Nadda, is about to take over the reins of the federal government.

Much of Mr. Kumar’s plight will be blamed on the harm Chirag Paswan’s LJP inflicted on his JD(U). Down in the dumps with only one MLA, the occasion spoiled the JD(U)’s possibilities in at the least 30 seats.

JD(U) spokesperson Okay C Tyagi informed PTI in New Delhi {that a} “sinister” marketing campaign was run in opposition to Nitish Kumar as a part of a “conspiracy“.

“Apne bhi shamil the aur begane bhi (Our own also harmed us along with the outsiders),” he stated, with out taking any names.

He, nonetheless, expressed confidence that Mr. Kumar will turn out to be the Chief Minister once more, noting that high BJP leaders together with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah have made it clear that he’ll head the federal government if the ruling NDA retains power.

Bihar BJP president Sanjay Jaiswal voiced related views in Patna when he stated in Patna “the issue has been cleared by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and party chief J P Nadda much before the elections“.

Apart from BJP’s 74 seats and JD(U)’s 43, the ruling alliance partners HAM and Vikassheel Insaan Party (VIP) won four seats each.

The drastic fall in the number of JD(U) MLAs, however, will likely make the BJP, which hitherto played a second fiddle to Mr. Kumar, more assertive, and it may insist on a larger share in the ministerial pie and greater say in governance.

Apart from Mr. Kumar’s creditable performance as an administrator, the multiple claimants to Muslim votes, including the Grand Democratic Secular Front (GDSF) comprising Asaduddin Owaisi’s AIMIM, BSP and Upendra Kushwaha’s RLSP worked in NDA’s favour and scuppered the Mahagathbandhan’s chances. Muslim and Yadav voters have for long formed the bedrock of the RJD’s support base.

Mr. Owaisi’s AIMIM emerged as a surprise package of the election, winning five seats. The party had gained a foothold winning a seat in a by-election in Bihar earlier, but made significant inroads into the Seemanchanchal region which has a large presence of Muslim voters. Its ally BSP also clinched one seat.

Mr. Kumar, who has a clean image and is considered incorruptible, has been credited with ridding the State of the “jungle raj”, because the Lalu-Rabri authorities of 15 years previous 2005 is commonly described by its critics.

The JD(U) chief additionally earned reward for his impetus on infrastructure growth and bettering well being care system and schooling.

Besides, Mr. Modi’s enduring charisma not solely powered the alliance’s victory but additionally helped the BJP to pre-eminent place in the NDA in Bihar for the primary time and reduce his former bete noire Nitish Kumar, as soon as thought of a secular various to him, to dimension.

The election additionally noticed the approaching of age of Tejashwi Yadav, who got here throughout as an indefatigable chief after RJD’s unprecedented drubbing in the Lok Sabha polls final yr when it failed to open its account.

The NDA had clinched all however one of many 40 seats in the State, leaving the younger chief in torpor and his occasion demoralised. Tejashwi Yadav’s potential to lead the occasion in the absence of his charismatic father and occasion supremo Lalu Prasad, who had landed in jail after conviction in fodder rip-off circumstances, was referred to as into query.

However, after the Assembly elections had been introduced, he steeled himself for the wrestle forward and virtually single handedly introduced the 5 occasion Grand Alliance surprisingly shut to power in a battle the place a military of battle hardened veterans had been arrayed in opposition to him.

A significant upshot of the gruelling electoral tussle between the 2 alliances was the resurgence of Left, which aligned with the RJD-Congress mix after being pushed to the margins in the post-Mandal period politics of Bihar.

The largest gainer was the CPI-ML, which clinched 12 seats, adopted by the CPI and CPI-M (two every). Barring the CPI-ML, which had three seats in the outgoing Assembly, not one of the Left events had a presence in the House.

Brothers Tejashwi Yadav and Tej Pratap received the Raghopur and Hasanpur seats with spectacular margins of 38,174 and 21,139 votes respectively.

Prominent losers from the RJD included Abdul Bari Siddiqui, a former State occasion chief, and Lalu Prasad’s Man Friday Bhola Yadav who misplaced from Keoti and Hayaghat seats in Darbhanga respectively.

Senior Bihar minister Vijendra Prasad Yadav of JD(U) received from Supual, and Niraj Singh Babloo of the BJP, a cousin of actor Sushant Singh Rajput, whose mysterious loss of life grew to become an election problem, retained the Chhatapur seat.

State Assembly speaker Vijay Kumar Chaudhary of the JD(U) was among the many victors.

Ace former shooter and Commonwealth gold medalist Shreyasi Singh of BJP received the Jamui seat by over 41,000 votes, however veteran socialist chief Sharad Yadav’s daughter Subhashini misplaced in Bihariganj.

HAM president Jitan Ram Manjhi defeated former State Assembly Speaker Uday Narayan Chaudhary in Imamganj of Gaya district.

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