New Delhi | Jagran Politics Desk: Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar is seeking a fourth straight electoral victory in the ongoing assembly polls. Confident of ruling the state for the next five years, Kumar faces a dual challenge from the RJD and LJP, the former NDA alliance partner.

However, there is a fact about the 69-year-old leader that is known to many. Kumar - a member of the legislative council of Bihar - had last contested a Vidhan Sabha elections some 35 years ago.

Kumar has this thing in common with Yogi Adityanath and Uddhav Thackeray, the chief ministers of the other two most populous states of India. Adityanath and Thackeray have never contested a Vidhan Sabha election.

Adityanath and Kumar, however, have contested general elections. The Uttar Pradesh chief minister has won Lok Sabha elections five straight times from Gorakhpur parliamentary constituency while Kumar has won the Lok Sabha polls six times, his last one being in 2004 when he won from Nalanda parliamentary constituency but lost from Barh seat.

Going by the facts, Nitish Kumar is seeking fourth consecutive victory while he has taken oath as the chief minister five times - in 2000, 2005, 2010 and twice in 2015.

To be a chief minister of minister, it is required by law to be a member of the state legislature. With Kumar not fighting the elections, he has questioned by many who have alleged that he deliberately avoided facing voters.

Kumar, after being reelected to the legislative council in 2012, explained why he chose the MLC route and not the direct election route.

“I chose to become an MLC by choice and not because of any compulsion as the Upper House is a respectable institution. I will once again be elected to the Legislative Council upon completion of the present six-year term,” he had said while addressing the commemorative meeting of the legislative council to mark its centenary celebrations in January 2012.

Kumar got reelected to the legislative council in 2018 for the third time in a row. His term ends in 2024. Political observers believe that Kumar will be 74 years old by then and might plan retirement from active politics.

Nitish has been the chief minister of Bihar since 2005 except for a brief period of around nine months in 2014-15 when he stepped down following the BJP’s massive victory in 2014 Lok Sabha polls over his differences with Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Posted By: Abhinav Gupta