Saddled With BJP-Heavy Cabinet, Will Nitish Remain Sushasan Babu?

Nitish Kumar was sworn in as the CM of Bihar for a record fourth straight term with two deputies from the BJP.

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On Monday, 16 November, Nitish Kumar was sworn in as the chief minister of Bihar for a record fourth straight term. This time he got two deputies from the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) – Tarkishore Prasad and Renu Devi.

Out of the total 14 Cabinet berths, the BJP got seven, the Janata Dal (United (JDU) got five, and the Vikassheel Insaan Party (VIP) and the Hindustani Awam Morcha (HAM) got one berth each.

The National Democratic Alliance (NDA) won the 2020 Bihar election – the results of which came on 10 November – by a wafer-thin majority, winning 125 out of the 243 seats.

While political analysts called this a rise of Rashtriya Janata Dal’s Tejashwi Yadav, the BJP has surged in Bihar with a record 74 Assembly seats, pushing Nitish Kumar’s Janata Dal (United) to the third spot.

Sushil Modi, who was a deputy to Nitish Kumar, was not given Cabinet berth. Talking to the media, Kumar said that it the BJP who needs to be asked why Sushil Modi wasn’t chosen this time around.

Both the deputy chief ministers who have been appointed from the BJP come from backward classes. This is being seen as the BJP’s strategy to strengthen its backward class vote bank. It must also be noted that there is no Muslim face in Bihar’s new Cabinet.

It will be interesting to see if Nitish Kumar, who is also called ‘Sushasan Babu,’ would be able to work on his own terms in an NDA dominated by the saffron party.

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