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Home / India / Nitish Kumar attends RJD's Iftar party, triggers political row

Nitish Kumar attends RJD's Iftar party, triggers political row

The visit comes amid skirmishes between ruling allies Janata Dal United and the BJP over issues of governance and law and order
Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar with Tejashwi Yadav at the RJD leader’s iftar gathering in Patna on Friday.
Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar with Tejashwi Yadav at the RJD leader’s iftar gathering in Patna on Friday.
PTI Photo

Dev Raj   |   Patna   |   Published 23.04.22, 02:18 AM

Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar caused a surprise on Friday evening by dropping in at an iftar gathering organised by political opponent and Rashtriya Janata Dal leader Tejashwi Yadav, triggering speculation about changing political equations.

The visit comes amid skirmishes between ruling allies Janata Dal United and the BJP over issues of governance and law and order, and the BJP’s attempts to gain the upper hand in administrative matters.

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Nitish, accompanied by his security, walked the 100 metres from his 1 Aney Marg bungalow to the 10 Circular Road home of former chief minister and Tejashwi’s mother Rabri Devi where the gathering was held.

Tejashwi, leader of the Opposition in the Assembly, and elder brother and MLA Tej Pratap Yadav welcomed the chief minister. Nitish was seen chatting happily with Rabri, her daughter and Rajya Sabha MP Misa Bharti and other RJD leaders. He did not talk to reporters.

Nitish and Tejashwi had been at loggerheads since July 2017, when the chief minister dumped then allies RJD and the Congress and returned to the BJP’s arms to form a new government.

Nitish’s visit came on a day RJD chief Lalu Prasad received bail in the remaining fodder scam case in which he has been imprisoned. He is now being treated at AIIMS, New Delhi, for various ailments.

It also came a day before Union home minister Amit Shah’s scheduled visit to Bihar to commemorate 1857 revolt hero Veer Kunwar Singh’s achievement of wresting his fort back from the British.

Nitish has, without citing reasons, excused himself from the event in Jagdishpur, Bhojpur district, where the BJP will try to set a world record by having at least 75,000 people wave the Tricolour.

The lone BJP leader at Tejashwi’s iftar was industries minister Syed Shahnawaz Hussain.

Relations between the ruling allies have been uneasy since the 2020 Assembly elections made the BJP the bigger partner. Nitish believes the BJP got LJP leader Chirag Paswan to field candidates against the JDU to reduce its seats.

The BJP has 77 seats, the RJD 76 and the JDU 45 in the 243-member House.



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