It doesn’t matter whether the JDU and the BJP decide to come together or break their alliance, times will get tougher for Nitish Kumar.
As the general elections are around the corner, the eagerness of forming or breaking alliances is not uncommon. However, some are in a stage of confusion and still hoping for something good. The JDU-BJP alliance has the same story. In short, we can say that it’s a conflicted love story where they are forced to stay together despite having an inner dispute. It is not uncommon in politics to change the party or allies, and there is nothing wrong with it because even politicians can have changing ideologies.
However, it’s not easy for Bihar’s Chief Minister Nitish Kumar to break up with his allies as the situation would become worse for him. His ambition to become the PM won’t fade away while he tries to retain his position as the CM. The NIT alumnus has managed to serve as the CM for two times. It’s certain that he will complete his second term despite his ongoing fight with BJP, which both parties are trying to keep away from the voters’ eye. This tiff with the BJP could have a long-term effect for Kumar and his party JDU.
From Railway Minister to Chief Minister, each time destiny has had something for him, and he continues his journey as a prominent face of Bihar who can influence both state and center politics.
Kumar started his political career under Jay Prakash Narayan and was an avid follower of socialism. Early on in his political career, he was close to then Bihar Chief Minister Satyendra Narayan Sinha. Even though he is now struggling to keep his position, he knows how to stay in power despite getting tough competition from both rivals and allies.
From 1977 to 1998, he was active in the state as well as the center, but his real journey started from 1998, and he never looked back. However, his ambition to become the Prime Minister caused a personal conflict between Modi and him which became ugly before the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, and to save his secular image he cut all ties with the BJP. Though he continued as the CM till the elections, his party failed miserably in the 2014 elections by winning just two seats, and he resigned by taking the moral responsibility of the defeat.
A person who left the NDA by saying that a so-called communal face should not be the PM candidate, decided to form an alliance with him.
Be it the BJP’s overconfidence, his luck and/or performance as the CM or the Congress/RJD/JDU strategy or all of this put together, he managed to assume office for the second term. This time things got tougher for him with each passing day, from corruption charges against Lalu and his family to political pressure from the rival BJP where they continued to criticise him regarding the Grand Alliance with a party whose supremo was found guilty of corruption, he was forced to resign again.
Be it the opportunity to win the general elections, his moral policies or the rising pressure from the RJD to get more share in power, Nitish Kumar chose to come back with the old partner NDA.
Even though he came back as the CM, this time he gave an opportunity to the BJP to suppress him, and the party doesn’t want to any stone unturned to rise in Bihar without the support of the JDU. It will be like fighting against the same rival but at the same time to also prove themselves best without giving much thought about how they are creating an opportunity for the opposition. The failure to control communal violence raised the question about his ability and his secular image where he became helpless even though he wanted to take tough actions.
The BJP tried to suppress the JDU by using Modi as a prime face which again caused a rift between the two parties, and his stern warning to take strong action against communal violence was just an example.
Currently, the party is not in a position to go against or in favour of the BJP, and the recent announcement clearly shows that. The JDU carefully crafted its election plan and decided to contest independently in four states, and this was an indirect warning to the BJP for its ignorance, indicates that all is not well. For the sake of the alliance, Kumar can’t open against the BJP or RJD as the post-election scenario would be different and the ‘Grand Alliance’ is still waiting for him.
Whatever the result may be, one thing is for sure that the cold war against the BJP will damage the JDU irrespective of whether the BJP-led NDA government wins or loses the upcoming general elections, Nitish Kumar is bound to bear a loss. In one sentence, this is a personal defeat in his political career.