Nitish Kumar

Nitish Kumar (born 1 March 1951) is an Indian politician, who is serving as 22nd Chief Minister of Bihar, a state in India, since 2015 and has served in that role on five previous occasions.[1] He has also served as an Union minister in the Union Government of India.

Nitish Kumar
The Chief Minister of Bihar, Shri Nitish Kumar meeting with the Deputy Chairman, Planning Commission, Shri Montek Singh Ahluwalia to finalize Annual Plan 2007-08 of the State, in New Delhi on February 14, 2007 (Nitish Kumar) (cropped).jpg
22nd Chief Minister of Bihar
Assumed office
22 February 2015
Governor
Deputy
Preceded byJitan Ram Manjhi
In office
24 November 2005 – 17 May 2014
GovernorButa Singh
Gopalkrishna Gandhi
R. S. Gavai
R. L. Bhatia
Devanand Konwar
D. Y. Patil
DeputySushil Kumar Modi (2005-2013)
Preceded byPresident's rule
Succeeded byJitan Ram Manjhi
In office
3 March 2000 – 10 March 2000
GovernorV. C. Pande
Preceded byRabri Devi
Succeeded byRabri Devi
Union Minister of Railways
In office
20 March 2001 – 21 May 2004
Prime MinisterAtal Bihari Vajpayee
Preceded byMamata Banerjee
Succeeded byLalu Prasad Yadav
In office
19 March 1998 – 5 August 1999
Prime MinisterAtal Bihari Vajpayee
Preceded byRam Vilas Paswan
Succeeded byMamata Banerjee
Union Minister of Agriculture
In office
27 May 2000 – 21 July 2001
Prime MinisterAtal Bihari Vajpayee
Preceded byAtal Bihari Vajpayee
Succeeded bySunder Lal Patwa
In office
22 November 1999 – 3 March 2000
Prime MinisterAtal Bihari Vajpayee
Preceded bySunder Lal Patwa
Succeeded byAjit Singh
Union Minister of Surface Transport
In office
13 October 1999 – 22 November 1999
Prime MinisterAtal Bihari Vajpayee
Preceded byM. Thambidurai
Succeeded byJaswant Singh
In office
14 April 1998 – 5 August 1999
Prime MinisterAtal Bihari Vajpayee
Preceded byJaswant Singh
Succeeded byRajnath Singh
Personal details
Born (1951-03-01) 1 March 1951 (age 70)
Bakhtiarpur, Bihar, India
Political partyJanata Dal (United)
Other political
affiliations
National Democratic Alliance
Janata Dal (formerly)
Spouse(s)Manju Sinha
ChildrenNishant Kumar (son)
Alma materNational Institute of Technology, Patna (B.E. Mechanical Engineering)

Kumar is a member of the Janata Dal (United) political party. Kumar's government was hailed by the state as a pleasant change from a long spell of rampant corruption, crimes and misgovernance. As the Chief Minister, he appointed more than 100,000 school teachers, ensured that doctors worked in primary health centres, electrified many villages,[2] paved roads, cut female illiteracy by half, turned around a lawless state by cracking down on criminals and doubled the income of the average Bihari.[3]

The Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi & Minister for consumer affairs, Ram Vilas Paswan visiting the Bihar Museum, in Patna, built during 6th tenure of Nitish Kumar.

On 17 May 2014, Kumar resigned, taking responsibility for his party's poor performance in the 2014 general elections, and was succeeded by Jitan Ram Manjhi. However, he returned to office in February 2015 following a political crisis in Bihar and won the state elections of November 2015. He was elected as the national president of his party on 10 April 2016. He resigned again on 26 July 2017 as Chief Minister of Bihar due to differences with the coalition partner, Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD), following the naming of Tejashwi Yadav, the Deputy Chief Minister and RJD member, in a First Information Report alleging corruption filed by the Central Bureau of Investigation. Hours later, he joined the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) coalition, which had thus far been the opposition, and secured a majority in the assembly. He became chief minister again on the following day. The Bihar government under Kumar banned alcohol in the state in April 2016.[4]

Early lifeEdit

Nitish Kumar was born on 1 March 1951 in Bakhtiarpur, Bihar.[5] His father, Kaviraj Ram Lakhan Singh, was an ayurvedic practitioner; his mother was Parmeshwari Devi.[5] Nitish belongs to Kurmi agricultural caste.[6][7]

He has earned a degree in mechanical engineering[8] from Bihar College of Engineering (now NIT Patna) in 1972[5].[9] He joined the Bihar State Electricity Board, half-heartedly,[5] and later moved into politics.[10] He married Manju Kumari Sinha (1955-2007) on 22 February 1973 and the couple has one son.[7] Manju Sinha died in New Delhi on 14 May 2007 due to pneumonia. [11]

Political careerEdit

Nitish Kumar belongs to a socialist class of politicians. During his early years as a politician he was associated with the likes of Jayaprakash Narayan,[5] Ram Manohar Lohia, S. N. Sinha, Karpuri Thakur and V. P. Singh.[9][12] Kumar participated in Jayaprakash Narayan's movement between 1974 and 1977[13]and joined the Janata party headed by Satyendra Narain Sinha.[14] Nitish Kumar fought and first time won his election to the state assembly from Harnaut in 1985.[5] In initial years, Lalu Prasad Yadav was backed by Nitish Kumar as Leader of opposition in Bihar Assembly in year 1989 but Nitish Kumar later switched his loyalty to BJP in 1996,after winning his first Lok Sabha seat from Barh.[5]

Union MinisterEdit

 
Union Minister for Railways Shri Nitish Kumar entering Parliament to present Interim Railway Budget (2004-05) in New Delhi on January 30, 2004

Kumar was briefly, the Union Minister for Railways and Minister for Surface Transport and later, the Minister for Agriculture in 1998–99, in the NDA government of Atal Bihari Vajpayee.[5] In August 1999, he resigned following the Gaisal train disaster, for which he took responsibility as a minister.[5] However, in his short stint as Railway Minister, he brought in widespread reforms, such as internet ticket booking facility in 2002,[15][16] opening a record number of railway ticket booking counters and introducing the tatkal scheme for instant booking.[5]

Later that year, he rejoined the Union Cabinet as Minister for Agriculture.[5] From 2001 to May 2004, he was – again – the Union Minister for Railways.[5] In the 2004 Lok Sabha elections, he contested elections from two places, when he was elected from Nalanda but lost from his traditional constituency, Barh.[17]

Chief Minister of BiharEdit

 
Nitish Kumar and Lalu Prasad Yadav discussing with the Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh about the relief operations on flood-affected areas, in Bihar, August 28, 2008.

In March 2000, Nitish was elected Chief Minister of Bihar for the first time at the behest of the Vajpayee Government in the center. NDA and allies had 151 MLA whereas Lalu Prasad Yadav had 159 MLA in 324 member house. Both alliances were less than the majority mark that is 163. Nithish resigned before he could prove his numbers in the house[5]. [18][19]

Kumar's government also initiated bicycle and meal programs.[5] Giving bicycles to girls who stayed in school resulted in the state getting a huge number of girls into schools and a reduction in school dropout rates[5].[20]

In 2010, Kumar's party swept back to power along with its then allies, the Bharatiya Janata Party, and he again became Chief Minister.[5] The alliance won 206 seats, while the RJD won 22[5].[21] For the first time, electorates witnessed high turnout of women and young voters, while this was declared as the fairest election in Bihar, with no bloodshed or poll violence.[22]

ResignationEdit

On 17 May 2014, Kumar submitted his resignation to the Governor of Bihar, a day after his party fared poorly in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, winning just 2 seats against 20 seats in the previous election.[5] Kumar resigned, taking the moral responsibility of his party's poor performance in the election, and Jitan Ram Manjhi took over.[23]

2015 Bihar electionsEdit

Kumar again became Chief Minister on 22 February 2015,[5] on the backdrop of upcoming 2015 Bihar Legislative Assembly election, considered to be his toughest election to date.[24][25] His JD(U), along with RJD and Congress, formed the Mahagathbandhan (Grand Alliance) to counter the BJP in Bihar[5].[26]

Kumar campaigned aggressively during the elections for the Grand Alliance, countering the allegations raised by Narendra Modi and the BJP.[27] The Grand Alliance won the Assembly election by a margin of 178 over the BJP and its allies,[5] with RJD emerging as the largest party with 80 seats and JD(U) placed second with 71.[28][29] Kumar was sworn in as Chief Minister on 20 November 2015 for a record fifth time and Tejashwi Yadav became Deputy Chief Minister of Bihar.[5]

 
Nitish Kumar with Kerala Governor Nikhil Kumar and Deputy CM Tejashwi Yadav

Kumar's campaign was managed by the Indian Political Action Committee (I-PAC) who were hired to managed the campaign for JD(U).[30] I-PAC designed the campaign strategy which included reaching out to a larger set of voters through innovative campaigns, including sending hundreds of branded cycles for outreach,[31] Har Ghar Dastak (door-to-door outreach)[32] and the DNA campaign.[33]

Mahagathbandhan breakupEdit

When corruption charges were leveled against Tejashwi Yadav, the Deputy Chief Minister, Kumar asked for him to resign from the cabinet.[5] The RJD refused to do so, and therefore Kumar resigned on 26 July 2017, thus ending the Grand Alliance.[5] He joined the principal opposition, the NDA, and came back to power within a few hours[5].[34]

2020 Bihar electionsEdit

Capitalising on his 15 years consecutive terms as Chief Minister,Nitish Kumar highlighted various achievements and developments and listed various schemes carried out by his government and finally managed to get over a tightly contested election. NDA managed to get majority in Legislature Assembly by winning 125 seats as compared to Mahagathbandhan's 110 seats.[5] He was sworn in as Bihar Chief Minister for seventh time in 20 years in the presence of top leaders of NDA.[35]

BiographiesEdit

  • Sankarshan Thakur authored a book based on his life titled Single Man: The Life and Times of Nitish Kumar of Bihar.[36]
  • Arun Sinha has authored a book titled Nitish Kumar and The Rise of Bihar.[37]

Awards and recognitionEdit

  • Anuvrat Puraskar, by Shwetambar Terapanthi Mahasabha (Jain organisation), for enforcing total prohibition on liquor in Bihar, 2017
  • JP Memorial Award, Nagpur's Manav Mandir, 2013[38]
  • Ranked 77th in Foreign Policy Magazine' top 100 global thinkers 2012[39]
  • XLRI, Jamshedpur Sir Jehangir Ghandy Medal for Industrial & Social Peace 2011[40]
  • "MSN Indian of the Year 2010"[41]
  • NDTV Indian of the Year – Politics, 2010[42]
  • Forbes' "India's Person of the Year", 2010[43]
  • CNN-IBN "Indian of the Year Award" – Politics, 2010[44]
  • NDTV Indian of the Year – Politics, 2009[45]
  • Economics Times "Business Reformer of the Year 2009"[46]
  • Polio Eradication Championship Award 2009, by Rotary International[47]
  • CNN-IBN Great Indian of the Year – Politics, 2008[48]
  • The Best Chief Minister,[49] according to the CNN-IBN and Hindustan Times State of the Nation Poll 2007

Positions heldEdit

Period Positions Note
1977 Contested first assembly elections on a Janata Party ticket from Harnaut but lost
1980 Contested from Harnaut again, this time on Janata Party (Secular) ticket. But he lost again. [50]
1985–89 Member, Bihar Legislative Assembly, from Harnaut First term in Legislative Assembly
1986–87 Member, Committee on Petitions, Bihar Legislative Assembly
1987–88 President, Yuva Lok Dal, Bihar
1987–89 Member, Committee on Public Undertakings, Bihar Legislative Assembly.
1989 Secretary-General, Janata Dal, Bihar
1989 Elected to 9th Lok Sabha from Barh First term in Lok Sabha
1989 - 16 July 1990 Member, House Committee Resigned
April 1990–November 1990 Union Minister of State, Agriculture and Co-operation
1991 Re-elected to 10th Lok Sabha 2nd term in Lok Sabha
1991–93 General-Secretary, Janata Dal.
Deputy Leader of Janata Dal in Parliament
17 December 1991 – 10 May 1996 Member, Railway Convention Committee
8 April 1993 – 10 May 1996 Chairman, Committee on Agriculture
1996 Re-elected to 11th Lok Sabha.
Member, Committee on Estimates.
Member, General Purposes Committee.
Member, Joint Committee on the Constitution (Eighty-first Amendment Bill, 1996)
Third term in Lok Sabha
1996–98 Member, Committee on Defence
1998 Re-elected to 12th Lok Sabha 4th term in Lok Sabha
19 March 1998 – 5 August 1999 Union Cabinet Minister, Railways
14 April 1998 – 5 August 1999 Union Cabinet Minister, Surface Transport (additional charge)
1999 Re-elected to 13th Lok Sabha 5th term in Lok Sabha
13 October 1999 – 22 November 1999 Union Cabinet Minister, Surface Transport
22 November 1999 – 3 March 2000 Union Cabinet Minister, Agriculture
3 March 2000 – 10 March 2000 Chief Minister, Bihar as 29th Chief Minister of Bihar, only for 7 days
27 May 2000 – 20 March 2001 Union Cabinet Minister, Agriculture
20 March 2001 – 21 July 2001 Union Cabinet Minister, Agriculture, with an additional charge of Railways
22 July 2001 – 21 May 2004 Union Cabinet Minister, Railways
2004 Re-elected to 14th Lok Sabha, from Nalanda.
Member, Committee on Coal & Steel.
Member, General Purposes Committee.
Member, Committee of Privileges.
Leader Janata Dal (U) Parliamentary Party, Lok Sabha
6th term in Lok Sabha
24 November 2005 – 24 November 2010 Chief Minister, Bihar as 31st Chief Minister of Bihar
2006 Elected to Bihar Vidhan Parishad (Legislative Council)
26 November 2010 – 17 May 2014 Chief Minister, Bihar as 32nd Chief Minister of Bihar
22 February 2015 – 19 November 2015 Chief Minister, Bihar as 34th Chief Minister of Bihar
20 November 2015 – 26 July 2017 Chief Minister, Bihar as 35th Chief Minister of Bihar
27 July 2017 - Chief Minister, Bihar as 36th Chief Minister of Bihar
2018 Elected to Bihar Vidhan Parishad, third term
November 2020 Chief Minister, Bihar as 37th Chief Minister of Bihar

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Nitish Kumar sworn-in as CM for sixth time: A look at the life of the 'Chanakya of Bihar politics'". Firstpost. PTI. 27 July 2017. Retrieved 2 January 2019.
  2. ^ "Nitish Kumar's development agenda makes waves in Bihar". Lok Sabha Elections 2009. Sify News. 1 May 2009. Retrieved 26 May 2009.
  3. ^ Antholis, William (22 October 2013). "New Players on the World Stage: Chinese Provinces and Indian States". Brookings Institution. Retrieved 12 November 2015.
  4. ^ Prakash, Guru (8 May 2020). "Nitish Kumar must lift alcohol ban to rescue Bihar from low GST and corona crisis". ThePrint. Retrieved 27 September 2020.
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z "Nitish Kumar, the 7-time Bihar CM: A look at his journey from Engineer to 'Sushasan Babu'". Republic World. 15 November 2020. Retrieved 21 February 2021.
  6. ^ Kumar, Sanjay (5 June 2018). Post mandal politics in Bihar:Changing electoral patterns. SAGE publication. ISBN 978-93-528-0585-3.
  7. ^ a b "Chief Minister of Bihar". Government of Bihar. Retrieved 29 January 2019.
  8. ^ "Nitish Kumar". India Today. Retrieved 5 November 2020.
  9. ^ a b "Bihar leader-Mr. Nitish Kumar". Hindustan Times. 18 August 2015. Retrieved 18 August 2015.
  10. ^ "I dream of the old glory days of Bihar". The Times Of India. 1 January 2012. Retrieved 21 October 2018.
  11. ^ https://www.hindustantimes.com/india/nitish-kumar-s-wife-passes-away-in-delhi/story-W6jz9FvoNtuKkb772mo5zH.html
  12. ^ "A Politician other Politicians should Emulate!". Polityindia.com. 18 January 2011. Retrieved 17 September 2012.
  13. ^ "Jayaprakash Narayan- His Journey & Movements". www.thehinducentre.com. Retrieved 12 November 2019.
  14. ^ Gandhi, A.K. "Nitish Kumar".
  15. ^ Railway online booking through credit cards
  16. ^ Railway Reservation through internet
  17. ^ "Nitish Kumar voted out of Barh, wins in Nalanda". rediff.com. 13 May 2004. Retrieved 23 December 2012.
  18. ^ March 2000: When Nitish quit as CM, before floor test
  19. ^ outvoted as much as outmanoeuvred by Laloo Yadav
  20. ^ "A triumph in Bihar". The Economist. 25 November 2010.
  21. ^ "Nitish sweeps Bihar polls; Cong crushed, Lalu eclipsed". The Times Of India. 25 November 2010.
  22. ^ on"A landslide sweep for JD(U)-BJP combine in Bihar : Election Updates, News - India Today". Indiatoday.intoday.in. 24 November 2010. Retrieved 17 September 2012.
  23. ^ "Nitish Kumar resigns as the Chief Minister of Bihar". IANS. news.biharprabha.com. Retrieved 17 May 2014.
  24. ^ "Frenemies Nitish Kumar and Lalu Yadav finally reach breakthrough in seat-sharing talks".
  25. ^ "Why The Upcoming Election In Bihar Is Critical For The State And Beyond".
  26. ^ "Nitish Kumar returns as Bihar CM". ABP News. Archived from the original on 23 February 2015.
  27. ^ Sajjad, Mohammad (8 November 2015). "How Nitish Kumar and Lalu Yadav won Bihar". rediff.com. Retrieved 9 November 2015.
  28. ^ "Won't contest Bihar polls, will devote time for campaigning, says Nitish Kumar".
  29. ^ "Won't contest Bihar elections: Nitish Kumar".
  30. ^ "How IPAC made it click for Nitish Kumar in Bihar". News18. Retrieved 29 September 2018.
  31. ^ "How Prashant Kishor's Team Swung the Elections for Nitish Kumar". The Quint. Retrieved 29 September 2018.
  32. ^ "Sunday Story: The Leader and his machine". The Indian Express. 5 July 2015. Retrieved 29 September 2018.
  33. ^ "Prashant Kishor: Man behind Modi LS campaign crafts Nitish win". Hindustan Times. 8 November 2015. Retrieved 29 September 2018.
  34. ^ "Nitish Kumar resigns as Bihar Chief Minister, says had become 'difficult for me to work'". The Indian Express. 26 July 2017. Retrieved 26 July 2017.
  35. ^ "Nitish Kumar sworn in as Bihar Chief Minister for the seventh time in 20 years". ThePrint. 16 November 2020. Retrieved 22 February 2021.
  36. ^ When Nitish Kumar canceled the Modi dinner
  37. ^ Ramakrishnan, T. (19 March 2012). "The man who transformed Bihar". The Hindu. Chennai, India.
  38. ^ "The day Patil took oath of office on Friday he honoured Nitish with the JP Memorial Award on behalf of Nagpur's Manav Mandir". The Times of India. 23 March 2013. Retrieved 21 October 2018.
  39. ^ "Nitish Kumar in Foreign Policy's top 100 global thinkers". indiatoday.intoday.in. Retrieved 14 June 2016.
  40. ^ Our Bureau. "Business Line : Industry & Economy / Economy : XLRI to fete Nitish Kumar". Thehindubusinessline.com. Retrieved 17 September 2012.
  41. ^ "MSN Indian Of The Year: Nitish Kumar". News.in.msn.com. 20 December 2010. Archived from the original on 15 June 2012. Retrieved 17 September 2012.
  42. ^ NDTV Indian of the Year: The winners (18 February 2011). "NDTV Indian of the Year: The winners". NDTV.com. Retrieved 17 September 2012.
  43. ^ "A Person of the Year: Nitish Kumar". Forbes. 3 January 2011.
  44. ^ Nitish Kumar, CNN IBN Indian of the year-2010
  45. ^ "News " Videos". NDTV. Retrieved 17 September 2012.
  46. ^ "Features". The Times Of India. India. 25 August 2009.
  47. ^ "Awards galore for Nitish". The Times Of India. India. 24 December 2010.
  48. ^ Indian Of The Year 2008 -politics winner nitish kumar Archived 13 July 2011 at the Wayback Machine
  49. ^ "IBN". Ibnlive.in.com. Archived from the original on 24 April 2012. Retrieved 17 September 2012.
  50. ^ https://www.elections.in/bihar/assembly-constituencies/1980-election-results.html

External linksEdit

Political offices
Preceded by
Rabri Devi
Chief Minister of Bihar
3 March 2000 – 10 March 2000
Succeeded by
Rabri Devi
Preceded by
President's rule
Chief Minister of Bihar
24 November 2005 – 17 May 2014
Succeeded by
Jitan Ram Manjhi
Preceded by
Jitan Ram Manjhi
Chief Minister of Bihar
22 February 2015 –
Succeeded by
incumbent