In a dramatic turn of events, JD (U) president Nitish Kumar, who recently resigned from his post, took the oath as the Chief Minister of Bihar for a record ninth time. Following the swearing-in ceremony, Kumar addressed the media, asserting his unwavering commitment to the NDA alliance.
Oath ceremony and cabinet formation
Nitish Kumar was sworn in by Governor Rajendra Arlekar at Raj Bhavan after his unexpected resignation citing issues within the Grand Alliance and the I.N.D.I.A opposition bloc. Kumar emphasised that despite past divergences, there is no intention of leaving the NDA fold. He stated, “I was with them (NDA) earlier, too. We went on different paths, but now we are together and will remain so.”
The Chief Minister revealed that eight ministers, including BJP leaders Samrat Choudhary and former Speaker Vijay Kumar Sinha as deputy chief ministers, took oaths on Sunday. Kumar assured that the remaining names for the cabinet would be decided soon, indicating a broader representation of leaders from three different parties.
Collapse of I.N.D.I.A bloc and return to NDA
Nitish Kumar expressed dissatisfaction with the functioning of the I.N.D.I.A bloc, a coalition he played a pivotal role in forming. He criticised the lack of progress within the opposition bloc, stating, “They (I.N.D.I.A bloc leaders) were not doing anything. Nothing happened after the first meeting of I.N.D.I.A bloc that took place in Patna last year.” Kumar’s return to the NDA marks a significant shift, and he commented, “Now, I have come back to the same place where I was earlier.”
Gratitude to PM Modi and developmental focus
Addressing the media, Kumar expressed gratitude to Prime Minister Narendra Modi for his good wishes. He outlined the primary objective of the new government, stating, “The new government (NDA) has been formed in Bihar, and we will keep serving the people of the state.” Kumar highlighted the potential for increased momentum in development work with NDA governments at both the central and state levels.
“On my own behalf and on behalf of all the people of Bihar, I express my gratitude to Honorable Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi ji for his congratulations and good wishes and thank him wholeheartedly for his cooperation. A new government has been formed in Bihar with the NDA alliance. The public is the master, and serving them is our basic objective. With the NDA coalition government at the center and the state, development work will gain momentum, and the people of the state will benefit from @narendramodi,” wrote Nitish Kumar on X.
As Nitish Kumar embarks on his ninth term as Bihar’s Chief Minister, his return to the NDA fold and firm commitment to collaborative governance will be closely watched for their impact on the state’s political landscape and developmental trajectory.