Early Bihar elections likely as Nitish Kumar govt resigns

In a rare move for an Indian politician, Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar has resigned from his position, accepting responsibility for his Janata Dal (United) party's rout in the just-concluded general elections.

The JD (U) managed to get just two Lok Sabha seats out of the 10 at stake in Bihar; following which Kumar today submitted his resignation to governor D Y Patil.

"I take full responsibility for the Lok Sabha results. The kind of communal polarisation that happened during this election campaign has never happened before," Kumar said.

"This is not a good thing. The results do not bode well, but we respect the mandate of the people."

"He [Nitish] has taken responsibility for the loss; we decided to seek a fresh mandate [for Bihar]," JD(U) leader Ali Anwar said. Nitish Kumar's resignation will probably result in early state elections for Bihar.

The resignation comes just hours after LJP chief Ramvilas Paswan asserted that the Nitish Kumar government would fall within two to three months and mid-term assembly polls would be held in October-November this year.

The Bihar CM's resignation was on the cards since the reports of his party's near washout started pouring in on Friday. Nitish remained inside his official residence throughout Friday and in the evening posted a one line post on Facebook page: "I respect the people's verdict."

Earlier yesterday Assam chief minister Tarun Gogoi had tendered his resignation, owning moral responsibility for the Congress Party's defeat in the state.