Nitish Kumar takes oath as Bihar CM for 8th time, Tejashwi Yadav as his deputy

Both Nitish Kumar and Tejashwi Yadav were administered the oath of office by Bihar Governor Phagu Chauhan inside the Raj Bhavan around 2 pm.

Nitish Kumar takes oath as Bihar CM for 8th time, Tejashwi Yadav as his deputy

PATNA: Janata Dal-United (JDU) leader Nitish Kumar on Wednesday took oath as Bihar's Chief Minister for the record eighth time. RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav also took oath as his Deputy in a simple ceremony held at the Raj Bhawan.



Both Nitish and Tejashwi were administered the oath of office and secrecy by Governor Phagu Chauhan inside the Raj Bhavan around 2 pm.



Minutes after taking the oath, Tejashwi also touched the feet of Nitish Kumar and sought his blessings. 



Kumar had on Tuesday quit the BJP, stripping the party of power, before resigning and staking claim to form a new government, armed with the support of the “Mahagathbandhan” (Grand Alliance).

The 71-year-old JD(U) leader first took oath as chief minister in 2000, when he headed an NDA government that lasted only a week. He was back in 2005, this time with his coalition had won an absolute majority in the assembly polls. 

The NDA won a landslide victory under his leadership in the assembly polls five years later. Kumar stepped down in 2014, owning moral responsibility for the drubbing of JD(U) in the Lok Sabha polls, but returned less than a year later when he was sworn in for the fourth time.

In 2015, Kumar was back as CM, with the Grand Alliance then comprising the JD(U), RJD and Congress winning a comfortable majority. He resigned in July 2017, citing irreconcilable differences with the RJD, and got sworn in again less than 24 hours later, when he formed a new government with the BJP.

Kumar was sworn in for the seventh time in November 2020, when the NDA retained power, though his own party saw a major fall in its tally for which it blamed a “conspiracy” by the BJP.

The longest-serving chief minister of any Hindi-speaking state, Nitish Kumar seems to have acquired an aura of indispensability when it comes to the highest seat of power in Bihar. A crafty politician, he kept the BJP guessing till the eleventh hour before severing ties with the ally, following 'unanimous sentiments' in his JD(U) that it was to be blamed for the party's dwindling fortunes.

Kumar then clinched a new deal in no time with the opposition which, bereft of power and coherence, welcomed him with open arms. In a political career spanning four decades, Kumar, 71, has kept at bay taints of corruption, nepotism and misgovernance, leaving critics with little except 'opportunism' as a stick to be beaten with.

Born on March 1, 1951, in Bakhtiyarpur, a nondescript town on the outskirts of Patna, to an Ayurvedic practitioner-cum-freedom fighter father, Kumar is an electrical engineer by training. During his days at the Bihar Engineering College, now known as NIT, Patna, he became active in student politics and got associated with the 'JP movement', which introduced him to many of his future associates, including Lalu Prasad and Sushil Kumar Modi.

His first electoral success came in the 1985 assembly elections, which the Congress swept though he managed to win the Harnaut seat for Lok Dal. Five years later, he moved to Delhi as an MP from the now-abolished seat of Barh.

After another half a decade, when the Mandal wave was at its peak and Prasad was reaping its dividends, Kumar sided with George Fernandes to float the Samata Party, which would later morph into the JD(U) and share power with BJP at the Centre and, 2005 onwards, in the state.

His first five years as a chief minister are recalled with admiration even by critics, marked by vast improvements in the restoration of law and order in a state that made headlines for massacres by rivalling militias and kidnappings for ransom. 

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