Alliance to Decide on CM Candidate: Manjhi

Claiming that his comments about Nitish Kumar being the next Chief Minister if JD(U)-RJD-Congress alliance came to power in the Assembly elections next year were "wrongly interpreted", Bihar Chief Minister Jitan Ram Manjhi today said that the alliance leaders will decide the Chief Ministerial candidate.

"If the Assembly polls due next year are contested in alliance, then the leaders of RJD, JD(U) and Congress will decide among themselves as to who will be the Chief Ministerial candidate," Manjhi told reporters on the sidelines of a function organised to observe Earth Day in the state.

Clarifying his stand on the statements made by him during his visit to Dhanbad in Jharkhand last Wednesday that Kumar will be the Chief Minister if the alliance got a majority in next year's Assembly elections, Manjhi said, "People have wrongly interpreted my comments."

At the same time, Manjhi said that Kumar was the accepted leader of his party and his name will be proposed as the next CM if he so wishes.

"Kumar is the undisputed leader of JD(U). If he wants, we will propose his name for the next CM. He did very good work in Bihar for the last nine years. Right now we are working under his leadership. This will continue in future also," said Manjhi.

The Bihar CM blamed the BJP for the confusion over his remarks and said that the saffron party wanted to sow doubts in the mind of the public and win the next elections just like it did in the Lok Sabha elections.

"The BJP is forgetting that the public is not going to believe it. We are contesting the bypolls to 10 Assembly seats on August 21 in alliance with RJD and Congress, and we will emerge victorious in all of them," added Manjhi.

Regarding drought like conditions in Bihar, the CM said he was ready to declare drought in the state but monsoon experts were speaking of the possibility of rain in the coming days.

"We have decided to wait till August 15 in this regard. There is a low-pressure system over the Bay of Bengal. Rains have started in the state since yesterday. If the rainfall is still inadequate, we will declare drought after August 15," said Manjhi.

Emerging story. Watch this space for updates as more details come in
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