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Bihar Political Crisis: Lalu Yadav Trying Hard To Continue Without Nitish, Heres How Numbers Stack Up

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NEW DELHI: While swirling rumours regarding Bihar’s Chief Minister and JDU President Nitish Kumar potentially severing ties with the RJD are afloat, insiders reveal that the Lalu Yadav faction is meticulously strategizing to secure the necessary 122 seats to retain power.

Quest for Majority: RJD’s Strategic Moves

Should Nitish Kumar indeed withdraw from the coalition, the RJD must secure an additional eight MLAs to sustain its governance sans the JDU. To bridge this gap, the RJD is eyeing potential defections from Jitan Ram Manjhi’s faction, the AIMIM, and other independent legislators.

Narrowing The Margin

Reports suggest that four floating MLAs from Manjhi’s group, along with a legislator from AIMIM and an independent MLA, may align with the RJD, bringing the tally to 121, just shy of the required majority. Presently, the ruling alliance commands 160 MLAs, with the RJD leading with 79 seats. Notably, JDU holds 45, Congress 19, CPI-ML 12, CPI 2, CPI-M 2, and one independent. In contrast, the opposition, comprising the BJP with 78 seats, Manjhi’s Hindustani Awam Morcha (Secular) with 4 MLAs, and AIMIM with 1 MLA, stands poised to exploit any potential rifts.

Manjhi’s Prediction

Former Bihar Chief Minister Jitan Ram Manjhi has forewarned of a rupture in the alliance, asserting that Nitish Kumar will sever ties with the RJD post-January 25. “Maine kaha tha khela hoga aur khela ho gaya (I had said that game will happen, it has happened),” he had said while speaking to reporters. Again on Friday, Manjhi said that the ruling Mahagathbandhan (grand alliance) government will not last for long.

The HAM president said that by seeing the statements of his former ally and Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, he had sensed earlier that there would be a change in the state. “Recently I had said that there would be a change in Bihar after January 20 and the basis of this was Nitish Kumar’s statement. He has said many things against RJD…On this basis, we said that the alliance would not work. Their alliance will not last for long. Nitish Kumar’s dream of becoming PM has been shattered… Therefore, after breaking the alliance, he may contest the Lok Sabha elections independently or join the other alliance,” Manjhi said.

Manjhi’s assertions, coupled with Nitish Kumar’s recent statements, hint at a seismic shift in Bihar’s political landscape, potentially paving the way for realignments and independent electoral bids.

A Fractured Alliance: Signs of Discontent

Echoing Manjhi’s sentiments, speculations over Nitish Kumar’s allegiances gained traction following his ascent to party presidency, intensifying after recent events, including the Bharat Ratna announcement for Karpoori Thakur. Nitish’s expressions of gratitude towards the Centre, juxtaposed with criticisms of dynastic politics, have fueled tensions within the coalition, as evidenced by Rohini Acharya’s pointed remarks, swiftly deleted thereafter.

As Bihar braces for potential upheavals, the delicate equilibrium within the ruling coalition hangs in the balance, with each maneuver and statement holding the potential to reshape the state’s political trajectory.

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