Opposition parties on Tuesday claimed the Janata Dal-United breaking ranks with the Bharatiya Janata Party is an indication of the change in Indian politics, asserting that their vision to fight the saffron party and its "politics of intimidation" has gained momentum.
The BJP, however, accused Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar of "insulting and betraying" people's mandate while claiming that his "prime ministerial ambition" is the reason behind the JD-U's decision to walk out of the National Democratic Alliance and join hands with the Rashtriya Janata Dal-led Opposition in the state.
Nitish Kumar met Governor Phagu Chauhan and tendered his resignation.
He later staked claim to form his next government with the RJD, Congress and other parties. This came after the decision to quit the BJP-led NDA was taken at a meeting of JD-U MPs and MLAs at Kumar's residence.
Kumar later held a meeting with leaders of the RJD, the Congress and the Left and said the next government will be formed with all the parties.
The JD-U chief said he has submitted a list of 164 MLAs supporting the new government to the governor.
Congress general secretary Jairam Ramesh took a swipe at the Modi government saying what goes up must come down, as it accused the ruling party of illegally toppling governments of opposition parties.
"In March 2020, Modi Sarkar postponed COVID-19 lockdown to engineer the fall of the Kamal Nath government in Madhya Pradesh. Now, it cuts short the Parliament session knowing its coalition government in Bihar is going. What goes up must come down!" Ramesh said on Twitter.
Another Congress MP Vivek Tankha said, "Nitish Kumar's ultimate signal through the U-turn is ‘that he prefers to leave Bihar 10-plus crore people's future at the hands of Tejashwi Yadav than entrench BJP. In retrospect for BJP displacement of Sushil Kumar Modi was a wrong decision !!".
Former prime minister and JDS supremo H D Devegowda said if the younger generation decides, it can offer a good alternative to the country.
"I have been watching the developments in Bihar. It made me think of the days when the Janata Dal parivar was under one roof. It gave three PMs. I am in my advanced years, but if the younger generation decides it can offer a good alternative to this great nation," he tweeted.
Communist Party of India general secretary D Raja said in a tweet, "Nitish Kumar breaking alliance with BJP is a strong indictment of the politics of intimidation practiced by BJP."
"BJP's authoritarianism leaves no scope for cooperation. After Akalis & Shiv Sena, JD(U) is the latest example. Cracks are visible in the relationship of BJP & AIADMK too," he said.
CPI MP Binoy Viswam said the events in Bihar indicate that a change is underway.
"Bihar conveys the message of far reaching change in Indian politics. It's final outcome depends up on the level of insight expected from the important players. The left will definitely play the responsible role in its consistant fight against RSS-BJP (sic)," said Viswam in a tweet.
The ruling DMK in Tamil Nadu said its president M K Stalin's vision to fight the BJP at the national level has gained momentum with Nitish Kumar's JD-U pulling out of the National Democratic Alliance in Bihar.
To take on the saffron party at the Centre, Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam organisation secretary RS Bharathi said Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Stalin had batted for opposition parties to join hands well ahead of the Presidential election held last month.
This vision of his party chief to fight the BJP nationally, has now gained momentum and it would pick up more traction ahead of the 2024 Lok Sabha election, Bharathi told PTI.
Trinamool Congress MP Derek O'Brien said the situation in Bihar is one of the reasons behind the Parliament session being cut short by the government.
"Bihar politics. Another big reason why PM @narendramodi and @AmitShah ran away and SHUT DOWN #ParliamentMonsoonSession FOUR DAYS EARLY," O'Brien tweeted.
The Monsoon session of Parliament ended four days ahead of schedule on Monday.
Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav welcomed Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar's decision to walk out of the BJP alliance, calling it a "good beginning".
"This is a good beginning today, the day when the slogan of 'Bharat chhoro' (Quit India) was given against the British. If the slogan of 'BJP bhagaao' (drive away the BJP) is coming from Bihar, I feel that in other states also, parties will stand against the BJP, and so is people," he said.
The BJP leaders noted that Nitish Kumar had snapped ties with the RJD in 2017 over allegations of corruption against its leader Tejashwi Yadav and asked how he will justify the alliance with the party again.
They also threw the jibe "Paltu Ram" (one who keeps changing sides), first used by Rashtriya Janata Dal supremo Lalu Prasad Yadav for Kumar, at the Janata Dal (United) leader and rejected claims that their party was undermining him.
RCP Singh, once a close aide of Kumar and now out of favour, also accused the chief minister of betraying the mandate of the 2020 assembly polls.
Union minister Giriraj Singh said the BJP had acknowledged Kumar as a chief ministerial candidate first in 1996 when it was a much bigger party.
He had prime ministerial ambition in 2013 and found a reason to separate with the BJP, and the same desire has gotten hold of him again, Singh said and mocked him as "Paltu Ram", noting that Tejashwi Yadav had used the term for him in 2017.
Former Union minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said Kumar is insulting people's mandate to enjoy power, he added.
Rashtriya Lok Janshakti Party leader and Union minister Pashupati Kumar Paras said his party will remain with the BJP as it is impossible to get another leader like Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
"Our party is with the BJP 100 per cent," Paras told PTI following a meeting of its parliamentary board where a decision to back the BJP was taken following the developments in Bihar.
A decision was taken to ally with the BJP in 2014 under the leadership of LJP founder and Dalit stalwart Ram Vilas Paswan, and his party will continue to adhere to his decision, he said.
Paras is a younger brother of Paswan.
"It is impossible to get a leader like Modi. He is the need of the country. Till I do politics I will be in the NDA" said Paras whose party has five MPs in Lok Sabha.
His rival and LJP (Ram Vilas) leader Chirag Paswan accused Nitish Kumar of "insulting" the people's mandate once again and demanded the imposition of President's Rule in the state followed by fresh elections.
Paswan also came out in support of the BJP and said the saffron party had accepted everything that Kumar wanted as chief minister and even compromised on its own policies.
"Nitish Kumar has once again insulted the people's mandate. He has lost his credibility... Is it a joke? At one time you go with somebody and the other time with someone else," Chirag Paswan told reporters.
"I request the governor to recommend the imposition of President's Rule in the state. Elections should be held for a fresh mandate," the Jamui MP added.