Doubts about real strength of SVD Govt in Bihar

Credit – Dive


Struggle, 28 February 1972

THE newly-formed Samyukta Vidhayak Dal Government in Bihar is the first SSP-led Government in the country.

It has been formed on the pattern of U.P. with the support of the SSP, the Congress (O), the Jana Sangh, the Swatantra, the Janta Party, the BKD, the Shoshit Dal, the Jharkhand, the rebel PSP, the Justin Richard faction of the Hul Jharkhand and an eight-member independent group, besides some independent and Ruling Congress defectors.

The total strength of the SVD constituents goes up to 171 in a 318-Members house.

There is no doubt in the eagerness of Chief Minister Mr. Karpoori Thakur to provide a stable Government. On Dec 22, the day he was sworn in, he had the solid support of 171 members of the Assembly.

But in politics, particularly in Bihar politics, figure do not make unalterable facts. The figures here represent human beings, who change according to the exigencies of developing situations.

The major parties are in favour of a comparatively small Ministry while the smaller parties want it to be large-sized so that they can get more representation. When the expansion takes place, one may hear discordant voices.

The SVD-Government is not going to have a smooth sailing, in any case.
The SSP is keen on the acceptance of a common programme for the SVD, but the Jana Sangh does not want any compromise on its own programme.

Even in the selection of Ministers from his own party, Mr. Karpoori Thakur is facing difficulties. Raj Narain, the SSP-boss, wants his representative in Bihar, Bhola Prasad Singh, wants to be included in the Government but Mr. Thakur does not want to include him.

The Janta Party expects the Chief Minister to settle Ramgarh family affairs on its terms but this will not be acceptable to other constituents of the SVD. The Jana Sangh and the Syndicate Congress will not accept the SSP’s land policy. Thus, it is a combination of uncomfortable partners.

The question on everybody lips is: How much long a ministry-with a bare majority of ten can last when its coalition partners have already started threatening?

The General impression is that: as soon as Indra Gandhi returns to Parliament with majority, she will immediately topple it.

In the meanwhile, Chief Minister Karpoori Thakur has denied to summon the Assembly earlier. The explanation furnished by him is far from satisfactory.

He is reported to have said that the Governor, Mr. Nityanand Kanungo had at no time suggested that the Assembly should be convened to test the strength of the Government.

Thakur claimed: “It is known to the world that we have the strength of 171 members in a house of 318 members .Five having no voting right.”

If the claim made by the Chief Minister is right, the new Government should have lost no time in testing its strength in the Assembly as this would have only strengthened its position.

In the event of the Assembly not being summoned, doubts are bound to rise in public mind about the real strength of the SVD.

Struggle, 28 February 1971

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