Even when his party has been reiterating that Nitish Kumar is “Prime Minister material” because he has all the qualities required to become one, the Bihar Chief Minister has clarified that ‘all such talks have no basis,’ and asserted that ‘all talks that come up at party meetings’ should not be termed as JD (U)’s official statement. The party is an ally of the BJP at the Centre as well as in the state.
Nitish Kumar when asked about being in the run for PM, said, “Mujhe maaf karo… During the meeting several other topics come up for discussion. If somebody says something on any topic, it should not be regarded as party’s official statement. It was a party meeting, with a lot on the agenda. The cadre choose to speak as they please on such occasions.”
On Monday, Kumar’s party members had asserted that it was not staking claim to the highest seat of power for the Bihar chief minister but “numbers” would be no problem if such a situation arose.
Kumar’s party colleague, General Secretary and spokesperson K C Tyagi was also of the same thought. “Nitish Kumar is not a candidate for the post of the prime minister. The JD(U) is the most trusted member of the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) and Prime Minister Narendra Modi is the leader of the alliance. But he (Kumar) certainly is a PM material,” Tyagi told reporters after the party’s national council meeting.
JD(U)’s parliamentary board chief Upendra Kushwaha had, however, rekindled sentiments about Kumar being “PM material” a few weeks ago and the chorus got louder on the previous day when “Mission Nitish” became the rallying cry.
He was also asked how long he was willing to wait for a positive response to emanate from the Centre with regard to caste census, a demand that saw him heading an all-party delegation to for it before Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
“Well, the census has not yet begun. Until it takes off, we can remain hopeful of our demand being heeded. In any case, it is the Centre’s prerogative to accept or reject our demand,” said Kumar.
Nitish Kumar who conducted an aerial survey and survey by boat of flood-affected areas of the state said, “I have conducted survey of flood-affected Kusheshwar Asthan area of Darbhanga district. Financial aid of Rs 6000 being provided to affected families. Some areas badly affected by floods.”