Nitish Kumar
Nitish Kumar
(File Photo)

PATNA: To pave the way for the formation of the ministry, Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Friday resigned and submitted his papers to the Governor.

Earlier, the last meeting of the cabinet was held through video conferencing and a resolution recommending dissolution of the existing House was passed.

Nitish called on the Governor immediately after the cabinet meeting and handed over his resignation. He was asked to continue as interim chief minister till the new ministry is sworn in.

A joint meeting of the legislators of the NDA constituents – the BJP, the JDU, the HAM(S) and the VIP -- will be held on Sunday at noon, where the leader of the NDA legislature party would be elected. Nitish said name of the chief minister and the deputy chief minister would be decided by the NDA central leadership.

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh is expected to attend the meeting as an observer.

Former chief minister Jeetan Ram Manjhi, who heads the four-member HAM(S) legislature party, has turned down a Congress offer to become the chief ministerial nominee of the Grand Alliance. Manjhi met Nitish Kumar and declared he would remain in the NDA "till death".

Despite the BJP emerging as the largest party in the ruling alliance with 74 seats, 31 more seats than the JD(U), the BJP top leadership, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi, have emphatically endorsed Kumar as the next chief minister.

The BJP realises the precarious equations that are at work. The possibility of Nitish deserting the NDA and joining hands with Tejashwi Yadav cannot be ruled out at some point in future.

Nitish had done so in 2015 and he can do it again he would any day be more comfortable with Tejashwi than BJP's Sushil Kumar Modi.

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Free Press Journal