The Bihar Post

Nitish remains an enigma for his allies, goes ‘Right’ turns left

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PATNA: It was all very smooth for the RJD chief Lalu Prasad and the Congress until last week.

But, some 18 months into power, Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar suddenly has turned out to be an for all—not only for both his alliance partners but also the opposition BJP which has rolled out red carpets to welcome Kumar to its camp.

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While he constantly reiterates he is with the grand alliance, his actions betray his words. And, again while his recent political moves indicate he is headed towards the BJP, his bitter attacks on the saffron camp leaves everyone guessing!

The confusion was quite much on display on Sunday again when he, on the one hand, took potshots at both the RJD and the Congress, and on the other didn’t spare the BJP as well, alleging the saffron party had no role in India’s freedom movement. His fast-vacillating stands have confused even the JD-U leaders who don’t know whom to attack and when to eat words.

Five JD-U’s spokespersons—KC Tyagi, Sanjay Singh, Ajay Alok, Rajiv Ranjan and Neeraj Kumar—had the biggest shock of their career last week when they were told to shut up shortly after they all had launched heaviest attacks on the RJD president for questioning Kumar’s move to support NDA’s presidential candidate Ram Nath Kovind against opposition’s Meira Kumar.

Prasad had termed Kumar’s decision as “historic blunder” while his party men had charged the chief minister with ditching all those who helped him distress. Moment later, however, all spokespersons were called by the chief minister who asked them not to criticize the RJD leaders.

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Even before the issue could subside, the JD-U spokespersons turned their heat on the Congress.

“The Congress has no right to speak against Nitish Kumar as it is not the part of the UPA,” declared Tyagi, reacting to Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad’s criticisms of Bihar chief minister for his “changing stand”.  Tyagi went on to add “they were more comfortable” with the BJP.

Hours later, however, Tyagi  made a sudden volte face claiming their “alliance was intact and it will go beyond 2000”.

Hardly had the dust settled in the grand alliance, the chief minister then came out in support of the GST and also sent his representative, energy minister Bijendra Prasad Yadav to attend the special session of the parliament. The RJD and the Congress, on the other hand, boycotted the event.

Prior to that, Nitish Kumar had supported Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Pakistan, his surgical strike and also his demonetization drive, making the experts guess that he may join the BJP camp sometime.

But, on Sunday, the chief minister set at rest all such speculations saying “I am not going to the BJP. All such talks are rubbish”.

But, what’s the problem with Nitish Kumar who goes on taking different stands at different points of time, asks the experts. “It looks like the chief minister himself is not sure as to what to do next,” asked a political expert.

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