New Delhi: 2019 General Elections may be far off but the anti-BJP camp has already started looking for Prime Minister Narendra Modi's replacement.
However, with so many rounds doing the rounds, the anti-BJP coalition, which is desperate to topple the central government, is a bit confused as whom to pitch against an 'invincible' Narendra Modi in the 2019 General Elections.
Among all, Nitish Kumar, the Bihar Chief Minister, is believed to be the front-runner in the probable PM picks.
With Congress rallying behind Rahul Gandhi to project him as its PM nominee in 2019, it is highly unlikely that the Grand Old Party will support Nitish Kumar for the top post.
Congress, a partner in the Bihar's 'Mahagathbandhan' government, has strongly opposed any attempt by Kumar to project himself as the prime ministerial candidate in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections.
After supporting the Janata Dal (United) in the Bihar Assembly elections, the Congress now wants it to back Rahul Gandhi for PM's post in 2019.
Even though this may have no bearing on the General Elections, which are still three years away, all this points to the growing tension in the anti-BJP alliance.
NCP chief Sharad Pawar, who had earlier backed Nitish Kumar as PM candidate, today backtracked on the issue, saying it is not appropriate to comment right now on whether Bihar chief minister would be the face of the anti-BJP alliance.
Though, the NCP veteran made it clear that since Nitish Kumar has proved his mettle in Bihar, he can’t be ignored.
Earlier, in an interview given to the Economic times, Pawar had endorsed Nitish Kumar as the most suitable candidate to lead the ‘united opposition’, if it comes into being.
He had said that the JDU president will be the most credible face of an anti-BJP alliance.
The NCP chief also said that it is too early to give a verdict on Rahul Gandhi as he has also evolved with time and making efforts to reach out to people.
Interestingly, just a few days back, RJD chief Lalu Prasad Yadav had said that he would back Nitish as future prime minister candidate.
Amid Modi-for-PM chant in BJP and elevation of Rahul Gandhi in Congress, a senior Samajwadi Party leader has proposed party supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav's name for the top post, claiming several regional parties have accepted him as their leader.
SP leader Naresh Agarwal said his party chief Mulayam Singh will be the best candidate for the PM's post.
On Sharad Pawar's statement about Nitish Kumar being a possible PM candidate for 2019, BSP chief Mayawati said it is ''too premature.''