Bihar CM Jitan Ram Manjhi Resigns
Patna: Facing apparent defeat, Bihar Chief Minister Jitan Ram Manjhi today resigned from his post. Hours ahead of the trust vote, Manjhi submitted his resignation to Governor Keshari Nath Tripathi.
Jitan Ram Manjhi made a dramatic exit this morning, driving up to the Bihar Governor’s residence hours before he was to seek a vote of confidence and resigning as Bihar chief minister. He has recommended that the Governor dissolve the assembly and call fresh elections in Bihar, which is due to vote for a new government later this year.
Manjhi was locked in a showdown with former Bihar chief minister and senior Janata Dal (United) leader Nitish Kumar, who had handpicked him to take his place last year. The BJP had asked its 87 MLAs to vote in favour of Manjhi today while the JD(U), RJD, Congress and CPI had issued a whip to its legislators to vote against him.
Manjhi has been running a minority government for the past two weeks with 12 legislators, after being expelled by the Janata Dal (United) party for refusing to allow Nitish Kumar’s return as chief minister. Kumar stepped down last year in the wake of the party’s poor performance in the general elections held last year and handed over the chief ministership to Manjhi.
But when he recently wanted to stage a comeback, his successor refused to make way for him, creating a rift in the party which has been the ruling party. Experts say that the Manjhi government’s chances of winning the trust vote in the assembly was next to impossible as he has the support of only 12 Janata Dal (United) legislators and three independents.