Voice from the Rooftop

Blog of Vincent Augustine D'Souza

Bihar elections

Bihar election results are out. JD(U)-BJP coalition has won. RJD-LJP, Congress and others have lost.

Nitish Kumar had made development an issue in the elections and he won. Manmohan Singh, Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi had campaigned in Bihar. They attacked Nitish Kumar. Their campaigns did not have the desired effect. Congress did not want coalition.

People ignored Naxal threats and voted.

Out of 243 seats JD(U)-BJP got 206, RJD-LJP 25, Congress 4 and the remaining went to others. Parties like BSP, SP, CPI(M) and CPI did not have much success. Rabri Devi lost from both seats she contested.

Nitish Kumar became chief minister for the first time in 2005 and had to quit within 15 days. In 2005 when he managed to get enough MLAs to support him President’s Rule was imposed. Another election followed and he had absolute majority. This time he has 85% majority.

Some feel Nitish Kumar successfully managed the elections. He kept Narendra Modi and Varun Gandhi out of campaign. Otherwise the result could have been different.

During RJD rule Bihar declined. Law and order collapsed. During its last years kidnapping had become a cottage industry. During JD(U)-BJP rule situation improved. However Nitish Kumar was soft on Naxals and there were some abductions and murders.

It is wrong to say Nitish Kumar won only on the basis of good governance. He had his combination of communities.

Some say Bihar election is a landmark as there were no promises of free electricity, TV or loan waivers. One can not promise free electricity when there is no electricity and free TV does not make sense when there is no electricity. Anyway, good that nobody tried populism. Populism has its price and it leads to problems.

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