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Nitish Kumar Takes Oath As Bihar CM For 7th Time

Patna: Nitish Kumar took oath as the Chief Minister of Bihar for the seventh time on Monday which was also his fourth successive term. Governor Phagu Chauhan administered the oath to Kumar at the ceremony at Raj Bhavan.

He was sworn in as the CM for the 7th time in his 20 years of political career in the presence of top leaders of the NDA including Union Home minister Amit Shah and BJP national president Jagat Prakash Nadda. While, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leaders Tarkishore Prasad and Renu Devi took oath as the Deputy Chief Ministers of Bihar.

Kumar, who heads the JD(U), was administered the oath of office at Raj Bhavan by Governor Phagu Chauhan, a day after he staked claim for the formation of a new government in the state, armed with unanimous support of all legislators of the NDA despite his partys plummeted tally.

The 69-year-old, who has had a continuous run since November, 2005, except for the period in 2014-15 when Jitan Ram Manjhi kept the chair warm for him, is on course to becoming the longest serving Chief Minister of the state, surpassing the record of Shrikrishna Singh who held the top post since before Independence till his death in 1961.

Kumar was first sworn in as CM in 2000, for a term that lasted barely a week as he failed to muster a majority and returned as a minister at the Centre in the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government.

Five years later, he returned with the JD(U)-BJP alliance winning a majority and upon completion of his tenure returned in 2010 when the coalition won a landslide victory in the assembly polls.

He stepped down in May, 2014, owning moral responsibility for the JD(U)s debacle in Lok Sabha polls, only to return in February, 2015 when a rebellious Manjhi was elbowed out.

In November, 2015, the assembly polls were fought and won by the Grand Alliance which then comprised JD(U), Lalu Prasads RJD and Congress with Kumar back as the Chief Minister.

He, however, abruptly exited the alliance in July, 2017, citing irreconcilable differences with the RJD and resigned as Chief Minister only to return in less than 24 hours armed with the support of the BJP.

The National Democratic Alliance secured a majority in the October-November Assembly elections, winning 125 seats in the 243-member house. However, Nitish Kumar saw his Janata Dal-United’s share slip to 43, while the BJP won 74 seats. Two smaller parties won eight seats.

JDU leaders Vijay Kumar Choudhary, Vijendra Prasad Yadav, Ashok Choudhary, and Mewa Lal Choudhary took oath as Cabinet Ministers of Bihar. While, Santosh Kumar Suman, son of Hindustani Awam Morcha (HAM) chief Jitan Ram Manjhi and Mukesh Sahni of Vikassheel Insaan Party (VIP) and BJP leaders Mangal Pandey and Amarendra Pratap Singh were among others who took oath as Bihar Cabinet Ministers.

Later in the day, Prime Minister Narendra Modi congratulated Nitish Kumar through his Tweet.

(Nitesh Kumar Sahoo With Agency Inputs)

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