Patna, March 13 (IANS) Bihar’s ruling JD-U would take action against former chief minister Jitan Ram Manjhi for violating the party whip by staying away from trust vote for Chief Minister Nitish Kumar two days ago.
“Certainly, party would take action against Manjhi soon after directive from the top party leaders,” said Janata Dal-United chief whip Sharavan Kumar, who is also the parliamentary affairs minister of the state, on Friday.
Sharavan said action against Manjhi will work as a deterrent to others in future.
He said the whip was applicable not only to JD-U legislators but also to the rebels led by Manjhi.
Nearly a dozen rebel Janata Dal-United legislators, considered close to Manjhi, voted in support of Nitish Kumar during the trust vote. But Manjhi skipped it.
Manjhi had sent a letter to Sharavan, raising the question as to how the whip was applicable to him as an unattached member.
“I had informed Manjhi that the relation of an unattached member without party affiliation cannot be severed with the parent party and the whip is applicable to an unattached member also,” he said.
Sharavan said that the reply had reached Manjhi well before the confidence motion was put to vote in the state assembly.
Nitish Kumar on Wednesday proved his majority on the floor of the assembly, while the opposition Bharatiya Janata Party members walked out of the house during the confidence vote.
In the 243-member assembly, the JD-U has 115 legislators. The party has the support of 24 Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) legislators, five of the Congress, two Independents and the lone CPI member. The BJP has 88 legislators and is supported by three Independents.