By Manish Anand
New Delhi, January 28: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is once more set for a marriage of convenience with the Janata Dal (United). Bihar Governor Rajendra Arekar may give time to the state Chief Minister Nitish Kumar shortly for a meeting at the Raj Bhavan in Patna.
Samrat Choudhary is the Bihar BJP president. His sole qualification to become the president of the state unit the BJP was that he hailed from ‘Koeri’ caste. His father Shakuni Choudhary was one of the sub-regional satraps in Bihar. He commanded followings among the ‘Koeri’ caste voters in Munger region.
The Bihar BJP president is hardly known beyond Munger-Bhagalpur belt in Bihar. This was also true for his predecessor Sanjay Jaiswal. The BJP leaders would widely lament that Jaiswal wasn’t heard outside the Champaran region.
The BJP had made two surprising choices for the post of the deputy chief ministers after the party formed the government in Bihar after the 2020 Assembly elections. The BJP-JD (U) combine had won the 2020 Assembly elections in Bihar narrowly. The Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) had emerged as the largest party after the election by winning a total of 75 seats. The BJP tally was just one less than that of the RJD.
The BJP nonmined Renu Devi and Tarkishore Prasad as deputy chief ministers in the Nitish Kumar Cabinet. Both the choices of the BJP invited redicule from within the ranks of the party. A section of the BJP leaders would admit that the decision reeked of arrogance of the central leadership of the party as the two were not even known outside their respective Assembly constituencies.
The incumbent Lok Sabha MPs of the BJP from Bihar are staring at uncertain future. Half of them are likely to be denied party tickets due to the age factor. The likes of Giriraj Singh, Ashwani Kumar Choubey, Radha Mohan Singh, and Chhedi Paswan are now walking into the winters of the political careers.
Former deputy chief minister of Bihar Sushil Kumar Modi is arguably the only BJP leader who is known across the state. Even after making their political careers as loudmouths, Giriraj Singh and Ashwani Kumar Choube could not rise to the stature of Sushil Kumar Modi.
The Central BJP leaders have evidently shown the party’s wish for Sushil Kumar Modi to stay in the club of ‘Margdarshak Mandal’. The BJP top brass has kept him on the sidelines since 2020. The leadership drought of the BJP in Bihar may possibly be a compelling reason for the saffron outfit riding high on the ‘Brand Narendra Modi’ to once again take shelter under the caste umbrella held by Nitish Kumar.