Nitish formally takes over as JD-U chief

Patna, Oct 16 : Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Sunday formally took over as President of the ruling Janata Dal-United (JD-U) at a party meeting in Rajgir in Nalanda district.

The two-day JD-U National Council meeting, that began on Sunday in Rajgir, ratified Nitish Kumar’s election to the top post, after JD-U Electoral Officer Anil Hegde made an announcement in this regard.

Upbeat over the development, several Bihar JD-U leaders said Nitish Kumar was the Prime Minister material, with a few even claiming that he would be the next Prime Minister.

However, Bihar’s opposition Bharatiya Janata Party leaders said Nitish Kumar was merely daydreaming and that there is no vacancy for the Prime Minister’s chair as Narendra Modi will continue in the top political post even after the 2019 general elections.

Earlier, soon after the meeting began, senior JD-U leaders made it clear that the party will play an important role in national politics ahead of the next Lok Sabha polls.

The JD-U is likely to mull its strategy to play a major role to unite non-BJP regional parties at the national level ahead of the general elections.

The party may also discuss among like-minded partiesthe projection of Nitish Kumar as the common Prime Ministerial candidate.

The JD-U National Council meeting started with the hoisting of the party flag by Nitish Kumar along with former JD-U President Sharad Yadav in the presence of hundreds of party leaders and workers.

State JD-U President Vashisht Narain Singh said over 1,200 party leaders from 24 states, including 170 elected delegates, were participating in the meeting.

He said: “The party will deliberate on alternate national policies and leadership.”

Former Jharkhand Chief Minister and Jharkhand Vikas Morcha chief Babulal Marandi will attend the meeting on the concluding day on Monday.

Rajgir is a historic place in Nalanda district, the home district of Nitish Kumar and about 100 km from Patna.

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