The Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar-led JDU-BJP government emerged victorious in the crucial floor test held on Monday, February 12. Amidst a backdrop of political upheaval, 129 MLAs extended their support to the ruling coalition, surpassing the majority mark of 122. Opposition legislators staged a walkout during the voting process in protest.
The Bihar assembly, with a total strength of 243, witnessed a significant moment as the BJP’s 78 MLAs joined forces with Kumar’s JD(U), comprising 45 members, to secure the mandate. Additionally, three RJD legislators – Chetan Anand, Neelam Devi, and Prahlad Yadav – reportedly threw their weight behind the JDU-BJP alliance during the floor test, further solidifying its position.
The floor test followed Nitish Kumar’s decision to part ways with the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) and forge a new government with the BJP. Kumar, who assumed office as Bihar Chief Minister for a record ninth time, underscored the enduring nature of the alliance with the BJP-led NDA, affirming that “this tie-up will stay forever.”
In a parallel development earlier in the day, Bihar Assembly Speaker Awadh Bihari Choudhary was removed from his post after a no-confidence motion against him garnered majority support. The motion, backed by about 125 members of the House, signaled a shift in the political landscape, particularly given Choudhary’s affiliation with Lalu Prasad Yadav’s RJD.
The triumph of the JDU-BJP coalition in Bihar, ahead of the 2024 Lok Sabha elections, carries significant implications for the state’s political trajectory. With the NDA alliance back in its “old form,” comprising BJP and JD(U), the coalition is poised to make a formidable electoral showing, potentially reshaping the dynamics of the upcoming polls. In the 2019 general elections, the NDA alliance clinched a resounding victory, securing a combined total of 39 seats, signaling a potential repeat performance in the upcoming electoral battleground.