Nitish Kumar wins confidence vote in Bihar Assembly

Amid hectic political activities, Chief Minister Nitish Kumar won the trust motion he moved at a special session of Bihar Assembly.

Zee Media Bureau

Patna: Amid hectic political activities, Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Wednesday won the trust motion he moved at a special session of Bihar Assembly to prove his majority after Janata Dal (United) parted ways with ally Bharatiya Janata Party.

Despite BJP`s defiance, Kumar managed to garner 126 votes (including those of Congress, CPI and four Independents) in favour, four more than the required number.

Twenty-four MLAs (including 22 of RJD and 2 Independents) voted against the Janata Dal (United) amid walkout by 91 BJP and 1 LJP members.

Going by numbers, there was no threat to the Nitish Kumar government as it had the required strength. In the 243-member House, JD(U) has 118 members, including Speaker, BJP 91, RJD 22, Congress 4, LJP and CPI one each and Independents 6.

Defying Kumar, BJP MLAs had staged walkout from the Bihar Assembly earlier in the day, saying voting is useless as the CM has already managed numbers by "jugaad".

The MLAs had earlier shouted slogans in favour of Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi while entering the Assembly.

Former Bihar deputy chief minister Sushil Kumar Modi had denied reports that the BJP has issued a whip to its MLAs, asking them to vote against Janata Dal (United).

Kumar, however, won the motion, thanks to the support of Independents.
Kumar, in the capacity of the Leader of the House, moved a motion seeking vote of confidence which was put to vote after discussion.

Arrangements were being made in the House to place BJP MLAs in the opposition bench in the changed circumstances.

After sacking 11 BJP ministers from his Cabinet, Kumar had met Governor DY Patil on Sunday and requested him to call a special session of the Assembly.
JD(U) needed support of four more MLAs to reach the magic figure of 122.

RJD was categorical in opposing the confidence vote.

"My party will definitely vote against the Nitish Kumar government during the trust vote," RJD president Lalu Prasad had told reporters here.

To a question if there was any chance of his party MLAs defecting to JD(U), Prasad asked, "Who would like to board a sinking ship?"

In the run up to Wednesday`s crucial voting, JD(U) and BJP workers clashed on Tuesday during "Bihar bandh" called by the saffron party, giving ample indications that the special session would be action packed.

(With PTI inputs)