Business Standard

Strange bedfellows


Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar is said to be miffed with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). Kumar leads the Janata Dal-United (JD-U), which was ignored in Sunday’s reshuffle of Narendra Modi’s Council of Ministers. Not one to sit quiet, Kumar reached out to BJP allies in Bihar such as Lok Janshakti Party (LJP) chief Ram Vilas Paswan and Jitan Ram Manjhi of the Hindustani Awam Morcha (Secular). Kumar and Manjhi had split on a bitter note, but politics turns foes into friends rather quickly. Paswan met Kumar after the JD-U formed an alliance with the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance. The LJP chief was taken aback when Kumar offered to accommodat­e Paswan’s brother, Pashupati Kumar Paras, in his state Cabinet. When Paswan pointed out that Paras was not a legislator, Kumar is believed to have told him that he would ensure Paras got elected to the state Legislativ­e Council. Kumar is said to have told Manjhi that he would make his son a minister.

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