PATNA: Amid the JD-U leadership trying hard to project him as “PM material”, Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar has denied he was in the trace for country’s top job.
“I’m not in the race for the Prime Minister. In fact, the whole confusion got created after I launched efforts to unite the anti-BJP forces,” Kumar clarified, speaking to media persons yesterday.
Observers, however, said Kumar had to drag his feet owing to strong opposition from the Congress party which is in the process of projecting Rahul Gandhi as UPA’s PM candidate. Congress is a coalition partner in the ruling Nitish Kumar government in Bihar.
Apparently, that is the reason the Congress leadership has also shot down strategist Prashant Kishore’s reported suggestion to project Rahul as Congress’s CM candidate for the UP assembly elections due early next year.
The Congress leadership has also made it amply clear the party’s alliance was limited only to Bihar and not at the national level, giving enough hints to Kumar about its plan.
“By the time 2019 elections come, the public themselves will oust the Modi government and there will be no need for any alliance,” AICC general secretary Shakeel Ahmad told a Press Conference in New Delhi last month.
In Bihar as well, the Congress leadership is constantly opposing JD-U’s move to project Kumar as PM face.
“None else but Rahul Gandhi will be the Prime Minister in the event of UPA gaining majority in the next general elections,” said Awadhesh Kumar Singh, a senior Congress leader and minister for animal husbandry and fisheries in the Nitish Kumar government.
There are many Congress leaders like Singh who have gone on saying there can’t be any compromise over of issue of Rahul’s leadership.
Last month, Union minister Ram Vilas Paswan had mocked the Prime Ministerial dream of Kumar saying there is no “vacancy” for the post in near future.
“Where is the vacancy for PM? Our Prime Minister Narendra Modi will continue on the post for the next 15 years,” was how Paswan told the media in Patna.
He alleged Kumar was being projected as the “PM material” by his men under a well thought-out conspiracy to divert the people’s attention from the real issues, and suggested the chief minister to better focus on Bihar.
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