Party mulls over poor show in polls during two-day meet

On the second day of a two-day State executive committee meeting of the ruling Janata Dal-United (JD-U) in Bihar, on Sunday, former MLA Umesh Kushwaha was appointed new State party president.

Earlier, Basistha Narayan Singh, the incumbent State chief of the party, had expressed his inability to continue on health grounds.

Umesh Kushwaha was JD(U) MLA from Mahnar in Vaisahli district from 2015 to 2020. He lost the last election, held in October-November 2020, to the Rashtriya Janata Dal’s Veena Singh. Mr. Kushwaha comes from Kairi-Bujurg village of Vaishali.

The JD(U) had called a two-day State party executive committee meeting to mull over the party’s dismal performance in the last Assembly elections and also to chalk out ways to strengthen the party in the coming days. The JD(U) won 43 seats in the 243-seat State Assembly.

On Saturday, party president and Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, while addressing the meeting, had said, “We failed to anticipate who our friends were and on whom we should have placed our trust in the elections.”

“The seat distribution within the NDA (National Democratic Alliance) should have been done five months before the elections. It was not done and as a result, the JD(U) had to pay a heavy price. People voted for us wherever we asked them and there was no confusion from our side, but false propaganda was spread against me and my party,” said Mr. Kumar, adding, “however, forget the election result and get back to work. Rest assured, we will emerge stronger.”

Mr. Kumar asserted that his government would last the full five year term, adding, “there has been no problem in the NDA alliance.”

BJP supports claim

Alliance partner Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in-charge for Bihar, Bhupendra Yadav, too, said on Sunday that the NDA government under Mr. Kumar would run for five years and “those who have been talking about a break in the NDA and the fall of the government should look into their own party’s affairs”.

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