Nitish Kumar would never have thought being anti-Narendra Modi will lead him nowhere. It seems JDU is going to pay a heavy price for breaking its alliance with the Bhartiya Janata Party. Allowing national media to its Chintan Shivir at Rajgir has proved to be the second biggest political mistake committed by the Chief Minister of Bihar. We probably wouldn’t have known all that we do about the ‘blasts’ in Patna that rattled the party to the core, but thanks to the media, people are aware about the evident cracks in JDU.
On one occasion, when the party was fighting a battle of survival, senior party leader Shivanand Tiwari embarrassed Nitish Kumar by not only openly praising BJP’s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi, but also went on to attack the Bihar CM below the belt. Tiwari questioned why Nitish Kumar was ‘jealous’ of Modi. He held the Chief Minister responsible for breaking ties with the BJP because of gaining feet in national politics. The same allegations were fired from Modi in Patna just few days ago. Another senior party leader, Narendra Singh too set the dais on fire by supporting Modi. It must be killing Nitish Kumar who never appreciated Narendra Modi.
Meanwhile, Tiwari’s speech brought a lot of cheers in the BJP camp. Reacting to his speech, BJP leader Kirti Azad said: “The truth can be suppressed but not hidden. Shivanand Tiwari has spoken the truth.”
This is not the first time that Nitish Kumar’s JD-U is facing trouble on this front. On October 2, the party suspended two of its Ministers of Parliament, Jainarayan Nishad and Purnamasi Ram for meeting Narendra Modi and praising him. In a similar incident in the last week of September this year, rebel party MLA, Chheddi Paswan was shown the door, once he returned after meeting Modi in Gandhinagar.
In fact, breaking alliance with BJP on the issue of secularism (read: Narendra Modi) appears to be a great setback for the JD-U. The party now believes that even an alliance with the Congress party won’t help them in the upcoming general elections. As we know, most of the ambitious regional leaders of the country are looking towards the post of Prime Minister and Nitish Kumar is also among them. But it will be tough for Nitish to win even ten seats in the given political equation.
It was him, who single handedly decided to go ahead with the split after being instigated by L.K. Advani. Even senior party leader Sharad Yadav was not in favour of splitting with the saffron party; they had been together for fifteen years. Nitish overacted, Advani retracted and now the party is going to pay the price.
Will JD-U split?
A probable split is looming over JDU. It’s easy to assume from Shivanand Tiwari’s speech at the open party platform that common party workers are dejected after splitting with the BJP.
Tiwari is a seasoned leader and he must have admired Modi. He sensed the mood of ordinary JDU workers who are fed up with the empty slogans of secularism and decided to come out with the truth.
Even Sharad Yadav was not convinced, when Nitish Kumar moved ahead with the split. If we keep aside the politics of alliance, Sharad Yadav was not happy with Nitish for ‘handling’ the security of Modi’s Patna rally on October 27, when several blasts took place killing six persons. Political pundits believe that Sharad Yadav may join the BJP bandwagon just before the general elections of 2014.
Now, only time will tell whether breaking alliance with the BJP was really the beginning of the end for JDU or was it the beginning of a new era for the party.
By Santosh Mishra
Video Source: JD(U) Minister Shivanand Tiwari praises Modi-India TV