Over-confidence cost Mahagathbandhan the Kurhani bypoll

The result of Kurhani bypoll has come as a big jolt to the leaders of seven-party Grand Alliance, which formed the government in Bihar in August after Nitish Kumar left the NDA.

They were thinking that the combination of votes was in their favour and the BJP which was fighting alone in Bihar, would not face their might.

Shivanand Tiwari, the national vice president of RJD admits that the Kurhani bypoll was lost in over-confidence and the strategists took it for granted .

“I personally believe that such a jolt is required for the Mahagathbandhan leaders as they were thinking that everything is for granted for them. They are thinking that whatever the plan we made in Bihar, the result will come accordingly. The voters of Kurhani replied with their voting power,” Tiwari said.

“It is an alarm bell for the leaders of Mahagathbandhan to introspect on their own and fill the gap. I believe that there is a hole in the ship and it needs repair. If we do not repair the ship in time, it will be difficult to cross the river successfully in 2024. There is a core voters of Lalu Prasad Yadav and Nitish Kumar in Bihar, but the strategy would work only when you make plans according to the voters. You can’t impose your plan on the voters.

“Nitish Kumar and Tejashwi Yadav should go to the round table and discuss the strategy with experienced persons who worked in the organisational structure of the parties for a long time. Listen to their suggestions and pick the best ones for the implementation. If we have to defeat BJP in 2024, we have to understand the ground reality of Bihar and accordingly make strategies,” Tiwari said.

Tejashwi Yadav, who returned from Singapore on Thursday evening, said that he will analyse the result of Kurhani.

“We believe that some gaps were there. We will look into that. The margin of defeat in Kurhani and Gopalganj was very low,” Tejashwi said.

In the last three bypolls, the BJP has managed to win two — Gopalganj and Kurhani. The win of Kurhani has a national impact and PM Narendra Modi also pointed out that in its speech in New Delhi on Thursday evening.

“The result of the Bihar bypoll is a clear indication for the BJP to come into power in future,” the Prime Minister said.

The BJP is currently an opposition party in Bihar and it has a different style in contesting the election. Apart from believing in its own strength, the party think tank also keeps an eye on those who are capable of cutting votes of the main opposition party.

In Kurhani, Mukesh Sahani was batting on the side of Nitish Kumar and his party managed to bag 10,000 votes. To counter him, independent candidate Sanjay Sahani obtained 4200, Shekher Sahani 3700 votes and Upendra Sahani 1000 votes. These three cut the votes of the fishermen community. Mukesh Sahani claimed that he was an established leader of this community.

After the election results were out, Mukesh Sahani levelled sensational allegations against the BJP.

“BJP funded those three candidates — Sanjay Sahani, Shekher Sahani and Upendra Sahani to cut the votes of the Sahni-Nishad community in Kurhani. BJP spent Rs 5 crore on them,” Mukesh Sahani said.

Chirag Paswan, the president of Lok Janshakti Party Ram Vilas (LJPR) is turning out to be a big factor in Bihar for the BJP. The popularity of Chirag Paswan is increasing in Bihar and it is reflected in his roadshows and rallies. The voters of Paswan community are looking at Chirag Paswan as a leader of the community and not Pasupati Kumar Paras. Chirag Paswan is managing to transfer the votes of the Paswan community in favour of the BJP which is becoming a cause of worry for the JD(U), RJD and other parties of the grand alliance.

In the past, the Nitish-Tejashwi alliance was taking the Dalit and Mahadalit voters for granted in view of leaders like Jitan Ram Manjhi and Mukesh Sahani, but Chirag Paswan is rapidly destroying the Dalit-Mahadalit equation in Bihar.

Mukesh Sahani, who claimed to do the politics of Extremely Backward Caste (EBC) had given the ticket to a Bhumihar candidate Nilabh Kumar from the Vikassheel Insaan Party. This was a clear message to the Bhumihar voters that the VIP was given the ticket only to cut the votes. It was not contesting for winning the election and this was the reason why the Bhumihar votes shifted to the BJP.

“We have won two out of three bypolls in Bihar. I want to say to Nitish Kumar that don’t live in arrogance. The voters are deciding here and not him,” said Giriraj Singh, the Union minister and firebrand leader of the BJP.

Meanwhile, Anil Sahani, who was disqualified as the Kurhani MLA after his conviction in the LTA scam, slammed Nitish Kumar and JD(U) for the defeat.

“It is not a defeat of Mahagathbandhan, but it is the defeat of Nitish Kumar and JD(U). The Kurhani seat belongs to EBC, but Nitish Kumar took the seat for his own party and gave the ticket to a candidate who did not belong to that constituency. Nitish Kumar has no moral ground to stay on the post of CM. He should step down from the post and make Tejashwi Yadav as a CM of state,” Sahani said.




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