No end to power tussle in Bihar, both Manjhi, Nitish claim majority in state Assembly

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He may be outnumbered but his spirits are still high. Despite having been expelled from the Janata Dal United (JDU), Bihar Chief Minister Jitan Ram Manjhi on Monday met the Governor and claimed that he is ready for a floor test to prove his majority in the state Assembly.

“We are not running away from the floor test. We want to prove our majority. Nitish’s election is not valid,” Manjhi said. However, he added that the voting should be done by secret ballot and senior party leader Nitish Kumar should not be present in the House at the time when the ballots are opened. “The ballot boxes should be opened in the presence of two independent observers,” he said.

Earlier in the day, Nitish also met Bihar Governor to claim stake to form the government in the state with the support of 130 MLAs. In a show of strength, Nitish paraded JDU, Rashtriya Janata Dal and Congress MLAs to the Governor House in Patna.

The former CM’s supporters have threatened to protest in Delhi if the Governor doesn’t allow him to hold a floor test in 48 hours.

After meeting the governor, RJD chief Lalu Prasad said that they have made a unanimous request to make Nitish the CM of the state. “All parties, the RJD, CPI, Congress have given their letter of support to the Governor for Nitish Kumar to form government in Bihar. The Governor heard us and said that Manjhi will also be meeting him today. We have requested Governor to ask Nitish Kumar to take oath as the Bihar CM without delay,” Lalu said.

Nitish also stated that they have urged the Governor to take a prompt decision.

While announcing the expulsion of Manjhi, party spokesperson KC Tyagi alleged that Bihar is not developing but crime has increased ever since he became the CM. “Operation Manjhi is being conducted by top leaders of BJP from Delhi,” he also alleged.

Meanwhile, Manjhi’s supporters have moved the High Court against his expulsion for making anti-party statements. The Bihar CM is gathering his forces and is expected to meet the Governor.