PATNA: Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar will face a floor test in the state assembly on February 12, nearly two weeks after he snapped ties with the grand alliance and formed a new government with the BJP and its allies.
The proceedings of the assembly will begin at 11 am with an opening address by the Speaker. Subsequently, Governor Rajendra Vishwanath Arlekar will address the joint session at 11.30 am, following which the proceedings will resume.
The BJP-JD(U) led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government is likely to move a proposal to remove Speaker Awadh Bihar Choudhary, who has already been served a no-confidence notice. Choudhary is an RJD MLA from Siwan and has not resigned from the Speaker’s post even after the collapse of grand alliance government.
Last week, Speaker Choudhary denied submitting his resignation from his post and said that he would discharge his duty as per provisions in the Constitution. “I will not resign until the assembly proceedings begins,” he had told the media after holding a meeting with officials of different committees.
After the decision on the proposal, Chief Minister Nitish Kumar will present a motion of confidence for his newly formed government in the assembly.
Deputy Speaker Maheshwar Hazari said that since a notice of no confidence against Choudhary has already been served, he would not be in the chair during the motion of confidence moved by the government.
The NDA has the support of 128 MLAs in the 243-member assembly. It is likely to sail through as the RJD-Congress-Left parties combine has only 114 MLAs. The RJD is the single largest party in the assembly with 79 MLAs.
Meanwhile, barring the RJD and Left parties, three other major parties of Bihar — BJP, JD (U) and Congress — are leaving nothing to chance to keep the flock together even as Union Home Minister Amit Shah is likely to address BJP MLAs before the crucial floor test in the assembly scheduled on Monday.
After BJP MLAs and MLCs relished the sumptuous dinner at a party, organised at the residence of deputy chief minister Samrat Choudhary on Wednesday, JD (U) legislators will enjoy a lunch party to be arranged at the residence of senior party leader and minister Shravan Kumar on Saturday. Both parties’ common objective is to keep a vigil on their legislators and gauge their mood.
The Congress MLAs who have been put in a resort on the outskirts of Hyderabad are likely to be shifted to the state capital on the day of the floor test or a day before. Some of the Congress MLAs also visited the temple town of Srisailam in neighbouring Andhra Pradesh on Tuesday.
Meanwhile, Union Home Minister Amit Shah is likely to address party legislators on the first day of the BJP’s 2-day workshop to be organised in Bodh Gaya from February 10. Preparations for the workshop-cum-training programme are complete, a senior BJP leader said on Friday.
Former chief minister and Hindustani Awam Morcha (HAM)’s patron Jitan Ram Manjhi commented on ‘X’, “No seat of power matters to me. It is enough that the voice of the poor, the oppressed and their rights should continue to be raised. I may be poor, but I cannot deceive anyone out of greed for a chair. HAM was with Modi ji, HAM is with Modi ji, Will stay with HAM Modi ji.”
HAM’s four MLAs are crucial for the NDA which has a total of 128 MLAs in the 243-member state assembly, just six seats more than the magic number of 122 for the majority. HAM chief and son of Jitan Ram Manjhi, Santosh Kumar Suman, is a cabinet minister in the NDA government.