Two days after breaking off his alliance with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, told reporters on Friday, 12 August, that prime ministerial ambitions are not on his mind right now and that he will try to unite Opposition parties and all of them should work together.
"I say this with folded hands, I have no such thoughts... My work is to work for everyone. I will make an effort to see that all the Opposition parties work together. If they do, it will be good...,"said Bihar CM Nitish Kumar as reported by news agency ANI.
This is not the first time since taking oath as Bihar chief minister that he has told reporters that he is "not a contender for anything" when asked if he wants to be the PM candidate.
Taking a jab at Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Kumar, on 10 August, said, "He won in 2014, but will he in 2024?" "The question to ask is if the person who came in 2014 will win in 2024," he added.
Additionally, he said that it would be great if all Opposition parties work together and his job is to try to ensure that.
On Opposition unity, he said, "Our role will be positive. We are getting calls from many people. Something is in the works. It will happen soon."
'Those Habituated to Misuse of Central Agencies Will Face Public Ire': Kumar
Kumar also attacked the Centre over the misuse of central agencies like the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and Enforcement Directorate (ED), saying “those habituated to misuse will face public ire."
Answering questions on whether he fears being targeted by the ED or CBI, Kumar said, “I have no such fears. Remember one thing, even if a habit has been formed of misuse (of agencies), those indulging in the same will be closely watched by the people.”
A floor test will be held on 24 August at the state Legislative Assembly, where the Nitish Kumar-led Mahagathbandhan or Grand Alliance will have to prove its majority. 164 members of the Assembly currently support the Mahagathbandhan.
Speaking to reporters, Kumar said that the Cabinet expansion is likely to take place before 15 August.
The Grand Alliance is of the view that Singh continuing as the Legislative Council Chairman would send a wrong message, since a new non-BJP government is in power now, sources said.
Senior JD(U) member Vijay Kumar Chaudhary said, “The motion against Sinha will be taken up by the House when it meets to enable Nitish Kumar to move a trust vote.”
"As per rules, a Speaker can be removed from office by a resolution of the Assembly passed by a majority," added Choudhary.
The Bihar Assembly Speaker is in Delhi to discuss the situation with the BJP leadership on whether to resign or face the no-confidence motion.
The newly sworn-in Nitish Kumar-led government in Bihar will face a floor test to prove its majority in the Bihar Legislative Assembly on 24 August.
(With inputs from PTI.)