Nitish Kumar has changed his political alliance for the third time now. Let’s look at how print cartoons have seen changes in his political affiliations.
In September 2013 when Narendra Modi was declared the head of the campaign committee for the upcoming Loksabha election in 2014, it was a clear signal that Modi would be the Prime Ministerial candidate for the NDA. Nitish Kumar was part of the NDA while ruling Bihar since 2005. Nitish Kumar opposed the candidature of Narendra Modi and finally decided to leave NDA. BJP and Nitish Kumar started word-fighting over the issue. Narendra Modi and BJP were quite active on social media including Twitter. On one occasion Nitish Kumar said that “Birds should tweet, not politicians.”
Nitish and his party along with RJD were defeated badly in the 2014 election. Taking moral responsibility for the defeat he left the CM seat of Bihar. Jitan Ram Manjhi was made the new CM of Bihar.
After some time, Jitan Ram Manjhi refused to work as puppet CM of Nitish Kumar. Nitish Kumar removed Jitan Ram Manjhi but Nitish’s image got damaged.
The defeat of both Nitish and Lalu in the 2014 election brought them together for the state assembly election in 2015.
The Coming together of Lalu and Nitish was also projected as the revival of Janta Parivar.
JD U also won one seat in the Delhi assembly election. Nitish Kumar supported the AAP government with one MLA without any condition.
The alliance of Nitish, Lalu, and Congress in Bihar defeated BJP in the state assembly election badly.
After the remarkable win in the Bihar state assembly election in 2015, Nitish Kumar emerged as the most prominent alternative leader against Narendra Modi. He started projecting himself as an alternative to Modi’s government at the national level.
The increasing popularity of Nitish Kumar both for his achievements in the field of economic development and social transformation was disturbing for Narendra Modi. The liquor ban in Bihar is one among several such initiatives.
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The cracks in the Mahagathbandhan of Nitish and Lalu start appearing. Some of the most confronting issues were misgovernance, corruption, and unnecessary space for Lalu’s sons in politics.
The bitterness between Lalu and Nitish starts appearing by early 2017.
Things were getting worst in the Mahagathbandhan. Nitish was looking to realign with BJP again. He skipped dinner with UPA chief Sonia Gandhi in May 2017. Soon Nitish was joining hands with NDA and Modi again.
Nitish again shifted his political alliance and joined NDA in 2017.
But neither JDU nor Nitish was comfortable with the alliance with NDA. While coming in alliance with BJP he was expecting a greater flow of funds for Bihar from the central government which never happened. He got annoyed over the way the central government responded to the Bihar Flood in 2018.
As the general election in 2019 was approaching the BJP leaders in Bihar were trying to instigate communal violence in the state so that they can polarise the voters on communal lines. This disturbed Nitish Kumar to a large extent. Communal Violence in Nawada was one such incident where Giriraj Singh played an important role.
The increasing differences between Nitish and BJP leadership in Bihar kept at margin till the Lok Sabha election of 2019. After the landslide victory of NDA and Modi, the BJP leadership in Bihar starts talking about the differences with Nitish Kumar in open.
NDA’s partner LJP under the leadership of Chirag Paswan (son of ) refused to join NDA in Bihar and fought election in Bihar without any alliance with NDA. This damaged JDU the most because he put his candidate from all seats from where JDU’s candidate were fighting while LJP did not fought even a single seat from where BJP was fighting. It was projected as Chirag Model of BJP to weaken Nitish and JDU in BIhar.
Nitish Kumar Bounce Back:
The differences between Nitish and NDA kept increasing. The BJP state leadersing continue to express their differences from the the policies of the Bihar government over several issues including population control policy, caste census etc.
Finally Nitish decided to leave NDA and rejoin Mahagathbandhan alleging BJP for trying to break JDU as BJP did with Shiv Sena in Maharashtra. This was projected as political defeat of BJP in Bihar by Nitish.
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