After Nitish Kumar's shock resignation as chief minister of Bihar, his former ally Lalu Yadav could only ask," What did we do wrong?" Nitish Kumar's decision to resign and Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s quick and rather public approval made it apparent how the subsequent series of events would play out.
Nitish Kumar, once seen as a potential challenger in the 2019 general assembly elections, resigned over a CBI FIR against his Deputy and ally Lalu Prasad Yadav’s son Tejashwi Yadav. In less than 24 hours, Nitish Kumar returned as Bihar’s chief minister, rekindling an old alliance with the BJP.
Meanwhile, Tejashwi Yadav proclaimed that as Bihar’s largest party, his Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) should have been given the first chance to form the government. He drew a blank at the Raj Bhawan and sat on a protest outside the Governor’s residence, threatening to go to Court.
The probability of BJP winning the 2019 elections has further strengthened. This will further attract fence sitters and leaders of smaller regional parties. The grand alliance idea at the national level is in complete disarray in the current scenario.
When in 2015, a grand alliance in Bihar halted Narendra Modi led BJP's winning march, many expected that this could happen in the 2019 general elections as well.
When the CBI filed a charge-sheet against Bihar deputy chief minister Tejashwi and other members of the Lalu family, the RJD leader only really had one option. He should have asked his son to resign. He should have then prepared a list of all those BJP ministers who have been charge-sheeted or indicted for one crime or another and demanded that they too step down. If Lalu believed Nitish was looking for an easy way to break the alliance and embrace the BJP, such a course of action would have called the JD(U) leader’s bluff about the call of his conscience.
Political analysts believe that Nitish Kumar's resignation wasn't centred around Tejashwi Yadav's corruption charges, as Nitish painted it, but the resignation is seen as an attempt by Nitish to better his political future by aligning with Modi.
Nitish Kumar, who broke ties with NDA before the 2014 general elections, had already begun to applaud some of Modi's policies in the recent months. Thereby, giving room for anticipating this move by his former alliance partners.
Following the resignation of Kumar, Modi immediately took to twitter to praise Kumar for fighting corruption in one of India's poorest states.
Indian Prime Minister scored another goal with the sudden political realignment in the populous state of Bihar. With this victory, NDA has now saffronized 18 of India's 29 states representing close to two third of India's 1.3 billion population.
The return of Nitish Kumar to the BJP clan marks Modi's political dominance and tactical acumen in defeating his rivals and turning foes into friends as well.