Nitish Kumar To Be Chief Minister For 4th Term, Will Take Oath Today

Bihar Govt Formation: Nitish Kumar elected as leader of NDA legislature party, set to become Bihar's chief minister for 4th straight term

Nitish Kumar to take oath today: The alliance has got 125 of Bihar's 243 assembly seats.

Highlights

  • The oath ceremony will take place tomorrow afternoon: Nitish Kumar
  • Will talk and decide who all will take the oath: Mr Kumar
  • BJP's Tarkishore Prasad will be the new Bihar Deputy Chief Minister
New Delhi:

Nitish Kumar will be the Chief Minister of Bihar for a fourth straight term, the NDA said on Sunday after a meeting of its legislators. The NDA, which won the recently-concluded election in Bihar with a wafer-thin majority, has met the Governor to stake claim to form government. The BJP's Tarkishore Prasad, the MLA from Bihar's Katihar, will replace Sushil Modi as his deputy.

"The Governor was informed of the NDA's decision and we submitted the letter of support of MLAs. The oath ceremony will take place tomorrow afternoon. We will talk and decide who all will take the oath. After the ceremony, the cabinet will decide when the House will convene," Nitish Kumar told reporters yesterday.

"Bihar people have given this opportunity so there is more development. there should be no inadequacy," Mr Kumar added.

The alliance has got 125 of Bihar's 243 assembly seats, three above the halfway mark.

The MLAs of the ruling alliance formally named Mr Kumar on Sunday amid speculation about a change after the voters' mandate was seen as one against the Chief Minister, who had faced anti-incumbency after three terms.

The 69-year-old dubbed Mr Sushashan Babu (Mr Good Governance) for years, had been blacklisted by many voters over his handling of the migrants' issue during the lockdown, local-level corruption and what the opposition called a failed prohibition. .

Mr Kumar's Janata Dal United has delivered an abysmal performance, slipping from the 71 seats it won in 2015 to 43, giving the BJP -- which won an unprecedented 74 seats -- the upper hand in the alliance.

While the BJP had declared before and after the election that Mr Kumar will remain its Chief Ministerial candidate,  a section within the party maintained that it should not be considered a given in view of the JD(U)'s performance.

Mr Kumar had told the media last week that the NDA will take a call on the Chief Ministerial candidate -- a statement seen as an indication of nervousness.

He had also vented bitterness over the BJP's handling of Lok Janshakti Party's Chirag Paswan, who despite being an NDA ally, had contested solo declaring that he wanted a "Nitish-Mukt (Nitish-free) Bihar".  

"It is up to the BJP to decide fate of those who cut votes," Mr Kumar had told reporters.

With Mr Kumar dependent on BJP largesse for his fourth straight term, there are questions on whether he would retain his absolute power over the government. Many feel that a chunk of his decisions might  be subject to BJP approval.