Nitish Kumar may join Union Cabinet after August 25

New Delhi: After walking out of the Grand Alliance, JD(U) chief and Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar will visit Delhi in the last week of August to discuss the modalities of joining the NDA government at the Centre.

During his three-day visit after the Bihar Assembly session ends on August 25, Mr Kumar will meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi, BJP president Amit Shah and officials of the Central government for seeking financial assistance.

A senior JD(U) leader told this newspaper that Mr Kumar wants Centre’s help to tide over the state’s financial crisis.

“The chief minister has prepared a detailed list of ministry-wise requirements that he will be presenting to the Central government,” he said.

The Bihar chief minister’s discussions with BJP’s central leaders on joining the Union Cabinet will come shortly after the party’s national convention on August 19, where a resolution on the issue is likely to be passed.

The JD(U) is facing a split over the issue of going with the BJP in Bihar, with senior leader Sharad Yadav and his supporters complaining that he was not consulted before the decision was taken.

Though Mr Yadav is unlikely to attend the party’s convention on August 19, the meeting is likely to be a stormy affair due to presence of some supporters of Mr Yadav, who has claimed support of many JD(U) state units against Mr Kumar’s decision to form government with BJP.

Sources said that Mr Kumar is unlikely to take a decision on continuance of Mr Yadav in the party on August 19.

The JD(U) chief  first wants party workers to see Mr Yadav and tainted RJD chief Lalu Prasad Yadav share the stage in RJD’s August 27 rally in Patna. “Only then will he take a decision,” said a leader.

Sources said Mr Kumar was firm that his decision to go with the BJP had sound political logic as he feared that the RJD was eating into the JD(U) vote bank.