The Bihar Post

Why Bihar CM Nitish Kumar has not released his party’s poll manifesto in 2019?

Kumar-led JD-U is the only party in Bihar which has gone to polls without poll manifesto

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PATNA: RJD lawmaker and Bihar opposition leader Tejashwi Yadav dared chief minister Nitish Kumar again on Friday to release his party’s poll manifesto as every other parties have already done so.

Nitish Kumar who heads the ruling Janata Dal United (JD-U) is still to release his poll manifesto while the seven-phase Lok Sabha election is now coming to an end, inviting ridicule from the opposition. This was the first time in many years that the JD-U has not made public its party manifesto.

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“Nitish Chachaji, show your guts…release your party’s poll manifesto at least on the last day of the poll campaign,” Tejahswi Yadav dared the Bihar chief minister. Kumar’s JD-U is an ally of the BJP.

The JD-U has been known for putting its views independently in public. In the past, it took a different stand on various issues such as Ram Temple, Uniform Civil Code, Art 370 that gives special privilege to Jammu and Kashmir, triple talaq and Citizenship (Amendment) Bill to name a few. But this time, the party appeared “vague” about its stand.

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“Nitish Kumar doesn’t have the courage to annoy the BJP by putting his independent views. The JD-U has become the ‘B’ team of the BJP,” RJD spokesperson Shakti Singh Yadav has commented.

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So what’s the problem with Nitish Kumar? “Nitish Kumar has done this under a calculated strategy. As his own charisma is missing this time and the chief minister has got heavily dependent on Narendra Modi government’s achievement, it would have conveyed confusion among the voters had he taken a different stand on these contentious issues,” commented a political expert.

“It’s not the same Nitish Kumar as we all saw him in 2010 when he had cancelled dinner for the BJP leaders just after BJP had given advertisements in local dailies showing him shaking hands with Modi. Now Kumar looks to be slowly compromising with his ideologies”, he explained.

Kumar who returned to the BJP company in July 2017 after winning Bihar assembly elections in company of RJD chief Lalu Prasad and the Congress is contesting on 17 Lok Sabha seats this time—BJP is contesting on same number of seats. But his aura looks entirely gone now, many say.

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