BJP gets 2 deputy CMs as diminished Nitish takes oath
PATNA: A new-look NDA government led by Nitish Kumar but during which BJP will have more clout took office on Monday with the 69 year-old JD(U) chief being sworn in along side BJP’s Tarkishore Prasad and Renu Devi who are set to be designated deputy CMs Twelve others five each from BJP and JD(U) and one each from smaller NDA partners HAM and VIP took oath to mark the start of a record-breaking sixth term for Nitish who has displayed remarkable tenacity but will begin his latest CM innings seemingly diminished due to his party’s poor returns from the polls.
The ceremony attended by home minister Amit Shah BJP chief JP Nadda and former Maharashtra CM Devendra Fadnavis was boycotted by RJD and other parties within the Mahagathbandhan which lost the nail-biter last. Tuesday who insisted on his leveraging his higher numbers in previous terms to secure bigger share of departments and therefore the post of Speaker has seen BJP playing by an equivalent playbook to demand bigger share within the government. The saffron party has kept its commitment to form Nitish the CM despite BJP winning more seats but has also been firm on getting a share which is commensurate with its new-found muscle While BJP has 74 members, JD(U) is 30 in need of them with current strength.
In the previous government JD(U) with 71 members had 18 ministers apart from Nitish as CM with 52 legislators had 13 ministers including deputy CM Sushil Modi. While Prasad and Renu Devi are set to be designated as deputy CMs the party has staked its claim for the post of Speaker with Nand Kishore Yadav being seen because the likely choice Name of Yadav who has been a part of every NDA government in Bihar since 2005 was conspicuously missing from the list of ministers who took oath. With BJP flexing its muscle and demonstrating its intent to rework the terms of trade with JD(U) by dropping its biggest face in Bihar Sushil Modi as deputy CM thanks to his perceived proximity to Nitish the ceremony had an air of uneasiness hanging thereon.
The audience at Raj Bhavan closely checked out the “body language” that ever-popular yet undefined index for gauging emotions in inscrutable situations of the cast and lots of eyebrows were raised when Nitish didn’t rise up to receive Prasad and Renu Devi once they greeted him with folded hands after having been appointed ministers.
BJP also tried to melt the excitement about Sushil Modi’s unhappiness “Sushil Modi Ji isn’t in the least upset he’s an asset to us. Party will believe him a replacement responsibility are going to be given to him” Fadnavis said at the oath-taking ceremony. Prasad and Renu Devi took oath as ministers because the Constitution doesn’t recognise the position of deputy CM.
In fact, in his congratulatory message to Nitish, defence minister Rajnath Singh mentioned Prasad and Devi as deputy CMs. Their upgradation will mark the primary instance of Bihar having two deputy CMs. JD(U) ministers included old hands like Bijendra Prasad Yadav, Vijay Kumar Chaudhary and Ashok Chaudhary, besides new faces Mewa Lal Chaudhary and Sheela Kumari Mandal. Other than the 2 deputy CM-designates, those from BJP included Mangal Pandey, who held the health portfolio within the previous government, Amarendra Pratap Singh, Ramprit Paswan, Jibesh Kumar and Ram Surat Rai.
After taking oath, Nitish said, “Based on the public’s decision, the NDA has another time formed the govt. within the state. we’ll work together and serve the people.” HAM MLC Santosh Kumar Suman, son of Jitin Ram Manjhi, also took oath, besides Mukesh Sahni, the founding father of VIP. Sahni, who lost, is probably going to be nominated to the legislature from BJP quota.