Nitish could emerge as the pointsman in the opposition unity if a non-Gandhi is propped up for a joint opposition. The Bihar coup is directly linked with Nitish Kumar’s smartly crafted national ambition without mentioning it from his side, but letting speculation around.
Bihar has 40 Lok Sabha MPs and the joint opposition could get a majority of seats which may also impact the Uttar Pradesh politics. Nitish is a prominent OBC Kurmi, and the community can impact the BJP prospects as they have been key to BJP’s success in Uttar Pradesh. If a Kurmi OBC is propped up then with Yadavas a joint force could be formed to take on the BJP with the help of minorities.
Though the NDA won majorly from Bihar during the Lok Sabha polls in Bihar in 2019, Nitish Kumar’s withering away from the BJP could impact the new political formation.
While Kumar may be silently working for a bigger leap to the Centre, there are others also in the race. Sharad Pawar is one among them. However, the happenings in Maharashtra where his idea of MVA fell out of power, has affected his political pace.
The Congress leaders do not want to comment on the 2024 situation. But they insist that any formulation will be led by the Congress, which is the biggest block in terms of numbers in the Lower House, and the Congress will lead any coalition that will be like the UPA.
Mamata Banerjee too is a contender for the space, but the BJP is trying hard to limit her to West Bengal only, which could hamper her game. She does not have a mass appeal in the Hindi heartland and does not belong to OBC either.
Any division in OBC only can stop BJP in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar, which has a combined strength of 120 MPs, and the BJP is quite strong in the region.
Political analysts say that arithmetically it may seem to be good, but the ‘Hindu’ politics is tilted towards the BJP.
The BJP, despite stiff opposition, got a sizeable number of OBC votes and saying that the OBC will shift towards the opposition is very early to predict, say analysts.
Though BJP has rejected this contention, Sushil Modi claimed that Nitish Kumar is aiming to become the Prime Ministerial candidate for the opposition in the 2024 Lok Sabha election and challenge Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The Bihar leader said, “he can’t challenge Narendra Modi. He does not have the capacity to challenge him.”
“For Nitish Kumar, becoming a Prime Minister is a distant dream. BJP will come with a thumping majority in the 2024 Lok Sabha election and Narendra Modi will become the Prime Minister for the third time,” Sushil Modi said.
BJP Rajya Sabha member and his former Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Kumar Modi termed his allegations against the BJP as “lies”.
“Nitish Kumar levelled serious allegations on BJP that the latter was involved in breaking his party. This is an absolute lie which Nitish Kumar and his party’s national President Lalan Singh are claiming. BJP was not involved in breaking the JD(U),” Modi said in his tweet.
He also denied Nitish Kumar’s allegation that the BJP made then JD(U) leader R.C.P. Singh Union Minister without his approval.
“This is also a lie. It was Nitish Kumar who gave the approval to R.C.P. Singh to become a minister in the Narendra Modi government,” Sushil Modi said, alleging that Nitish Kumar was searching for excuses to exit the NDA, and hence, “he took the help of lies and levelled false allegations against the BJP”.