PATNA: The Nitish Kumar government in Bihar survived a trust vote on the floor of Bihar assembly on Wednesday.
The Bihar chief minister won the vote of confidence in the Bihar assembly by 126 votes as 24 MLAs voted against the motion.
The ruling party, JD (U), had 118 legislators in the 243-strong assembly where the magic figure is 122. Nitish won the support of 8 MLAs belonging to Congress, CPI and Independents.
Despite a whip, four of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MLAs were absent from the meeting while six BJP MLAs are likely to resign on Wednesday and join JD (U). Vilasrao Paswan of the Lok Janashakti Party (LJP) was another notable absentee from voting.
Nitish slams BJP, Modi
Nitish, in a scathing attack on the BJP and Narendra Modi said, "There was no problem with (Narendra Modi) becoming the committee chief. But, the way it was presented, there was no more doubt what was expected next."
He said that the BJP is playing blame game post the split in the alliance.
Further taking a dig at BJP's ambition to form government at the centre, the Bihar CM said, "This is an era of alliance. No party should have misconception that they can form government on their own."
Speaking of the clash between the workers of his party and the BJP, Nitish added, "What happened yesterday (the clash) was not right. It shouldn't have happened. Both the parties should avoid it. But we didn't start it."
The JD (U) leader also lashed out at the BJP for releasing video of his speech praising Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi in 2003.
BJP stages walkout
The BJP walked out of the Bihar assembly before the CM could prove his majority in the house after dumping his former ally.
The BJP announced that its legislators would not take part in the trust vote.
"Our legislators have walked out," BJP legislative party leader Nand Kishore Yadav, the new leader of the opposition, told the media.
He accused Nitish Kumar and his Janata Dal-United of "betrayal" for ending its alliance with the BJP. He said his party would occupy the opposition benches.
"After sharing power with the JD-U for over seven-and-a-half years, we will sit in the opposition," Bihar BJP president Mangal Pandey said.
Communist Party of India (CPI) leader Awadesh Kumar Rai had earlier announced support for Nitish's trust motion while the Congress has welcomed the BJP-JD (U) split as it sees this as an opportunity to woo Nitish.
Bihar Congress Legislature Party leader Sadanand Singh said his party decided to support Nitish's trust motion.
The Indian prime minister had earlier described the Nitish Kumar as "a secular leader," an overture appreciated by the Bihar CM.
Earlier, the ruling party terminated its alliances with the BJP following the elevation of Gujarat chief minister Modi in its party ranks.
Modi was appointed the party's poll campaign chief, which, according to many, was a clear indication of the senior BJP leader will be announced party's prime ministerial candidate.
In a press conference, JD (U) Sharad Yadav said the recent developments in the BJP made it clear for his party not to extend their 17-year partnership in Bihar.
"We were in the NDA for 17 years and we had a national agenda that was formed with Atalji and Advaniji. We have tried to stick to the framework of the NDA but for the past 6-7 months situation has changed," he said.
"Any alliance runs by friendship and trust - we tried our best to run the alliance," he added.
BJP to sit in opposition
Ahead of the trust vote in the Bihar assembly in Wednesday, the BJP, which has 91 legislators in the assembly, said that the party is ready to sit in the opposition.
"After sharing power with the ruling JD-U for over seven-and-half years, BJP will sit in opposition," Bihar BJP president Mangal Pandey had said. (With inputs from agencies)