With reference to the editorial, “BJP’s knockout punch” (July 27), the alliance between Nitish Kumar
and Lalu Prasad and their parties was one of convenience to defeat the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in the Bihar Assembly elections in 2015. Back then, Kumar ignored several cases of corruption against Prasad. However, when Kumar discovered that the contrast between the images of the two leaders was leading to diminishing returns for him, he used the excuse of allegations of corruption against Yadav’s son, Tejashwi Yadav, to break the Grand Alliance. Kumar’s decision was likely made keeping the 2020 Bihar Assembly elections in mind.
Kumar’s action has three important political implications. Even as the popularity of Prime Minister Narendra Modi remains intact, the strength and unity of the Opposition is on the verge of demise. The swift action of the BJP was in stark contrast to the Opposition’s cluelessness. The Congress could have mediated between Kumar and Prasad, but it remained a silent observer. This highlights the leadership vacuum in the Opposition.
As for the BJP, its quick thinking and strategic moves succeeded in making Kumar — who had once refused to share a seat with Modi — agree to form the government with that party. It will make the BJP more dominating in the political arena.
As for Kumar’s Janata Dal-United, the pact with the BJP is fraught with apprehension as Modi would eye exclusive rule for his party in Bihar as much as Kumar does for his party.
In this game of politics, the people of the state have become victims. Their wait for a capable and stable leader continues.
Y G Chouksey Pune
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