Mahagathbandhan in Bihar – Is it Set to Tear Apart?

mahagathbandhan crisis in bihar


Mahagathbandhan was a historic coalition which took place in Bihar in the 2015 legislative elections, in which three political parties: Janata Dal (United), Rashtriya Janata Dal, and Congress joined hands, won the majority, and formed the government in the state. However, according to the latest news report, this Mahagathbandhan or the Grand Alliance in Bihar may soon see its end in the coming few days because of Nitish Kumar’s silence over CBI raids on Lalu and family.

Circumstances leading to break apart Mahagathbandhan

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) raided and registered an FIR against Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) Supremo Lalu Prasad Yadav,  his wife Rabri Devi, and his son Tejashwi Yadav on corruption charges a few days back. Immediately after this, the Janata Dal (United) JD (U) president and incumbent chief minister of Bihar, Nitish Kumar called for a meeting of his party leaders. Considered as a person having a politically clean image, Nitish Kumar does not actually want to compromise his principles for the sake of saving the ‘Mahagathbandhan’ government.

Charges leveled against the RJD party

According to the CBI, Tejashwi is involved in the “land-for-hotel” scam, in which three acres of prime land in Patna were transferred to the RJD supremo family by two businessmen so that they get licenses in return to operate two IRCTC hotels in Ranchi and Puri. This was the time when the RJD chief was the railway minister.

Nitish Kumar’s demand

Nitish Kumar wants the RJD party to come clean on the corruption charges and make a clarification on allegations leveled against Tejashwi Yadav and his family. Though Nitish Kumar said that the JD (U) party won’t break ‘mahagathbandhan’ in Bihar, but as per the latest news report, he wants the deputy chief minister Tejashwi Yadav to resign from his post within 4 days.

Tejaswani’s reactions

Denying the allegations of corruption, Tejaswani considers this as a political conspiracy against him by the BJP and its leaders Narendra Modi and Amit Shah. He told the reporters after a cabinet meeting that under no circumstances he could have indulged in such activities. Ruling out the possibility of resigning from the cabinet, Tejashwi blamed PM Modi and BJP President Amit Shah of targeting him because he belongs to OBC.

Lalu Prasad’s reactions

In another interview in a popular TV channel, Lalu Prasad ruled out the possibility of Tejashwi resigning from Nitish Kumar’s cabinet. According to him, it is the people in the state of Bihar who have given his son a responsibility as a deputy CM and he is doing his duty well. Also, the RJD patriarch denied any corruption charges and blamed BJP and its leaders with their conspiracy to finish him off and his party. In the meantime, Lalu is hell bent on organizing the “BJP Bhagao, Desh Bachao” rally in Patna on August 27, 2017 on a grand scale so that Lalu Prasad could depict CBI raids on his house as a result of the BJP’s ‘vendetta politics’.

What experts say?

Whether Mahagathbandhan will tear apart or will stay, time will tell. But according to experts, there can be three outcomes:

  • Nitish Kumar might sack Tejashwi from the cabinet. This will force RJD to withdraw support or nominate someone else in Tejashwi’s place. However, Lalu’s party has already ruled out this possibility.
  • In case there is withdrawal of support from RJD, Nitish, then, could take support from BJP. BJP  is more than ready to welcome Nitish.
  • The third option is for Nitish Kumar to tender resignation and recommend the dissolution of the Assembly.