Former chief minister and Hindustani Awam Morcha President Jitan Ram Manjhi (File photo/ANI)
Former chief minister and Hindustani Awam Morcha President Jitan Ram Manjhi (File photo/ANI)

Manjhi lends support to Nitish as BJP drowns him over floods

Pragya Kaushika | Updated: Oct 02, 2019 12:35 IST

By Pragya Kaushika
New Delhi [India], Oct 2 (ANI): With floods being the latest flashpoint between Janata Dal (United) and Bharatiya Janata Party in the state, opposition parties in Bihar have started warming up to the state Chief Minister Nitish Kumar.
With the rift in the National Democratic Alliance out in the open after BJP leaders' severe criticism of Kumar, his former alliance partner and former chief minister, Jitan Ram Manjhi extended his support to the Janata Dal (United), in case the ruling coalition falls apart.
Speaking to ANI the former chief minister of Bihar stated, " Truth is, people who BJP is taking along think differently on various issues. Take the issue of Triple Talaq, JDU's MPs protested against it, they did not agree on Article 370, on NRC and on Uniform Civil Code, Nitish Kumar protested. We will lend support to him if he distances himself or BJP distances itself from him. "
Further elaborating on his stand, Manjhi stated that his party was willing to offer support to Nitish.
"We support Kumar on Article 370 and Triple Talaq. We would go a step further and say that if the BJP tries to sideline him we would be more than happy to offer our support, "he added.
Manjhi is President of the Hindustani Awam Morcha, which has been in alliance with the RJD and the Congress.
"Chaar paanch aise mudde hai jo bhaajpa se Nitish Kumar ko alag karne ke liye kaafi hain. In muddo par Nitish Kumar ka jaise dimaag hai waisa rahe, bhaajpa ke log duri bana sakte hai. (There are four-five issues which are enough to separate Nitish from BJP. If Nitish stands firm on these issues, BJP can distance itself from him)," added the former Bihar CM.
The offer of support from Manjhi came a day after Union Minister Giriraj Singh launched a scathing attack against the Nitish government over its failure to provide relief to the state reeling under severe flooding.
Incidentally, the BJP and JDU are allies in the Bihar government. The two have been on opposing sides on several issues including, abrogation of Article 370, implementation of National Register Citizens and Triple Talaq bill. The leaders of the two parties have been making statements against each other over the past several weeks, causing a further rift in the alliance.
Manjhi pointed out that these issues were close to the BJP and they could create trouble for Nitish in the future. "Nitish is only enduring as he is bound by the compulsions of the alliance, " Manjhi added.
On the control of prevailing flood situation in the state he said, "We support Kumar on his stand that Central government and governments Bihar and West Bengal should work on Farrakha dam." (ANI)