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Nitish Refuses To Withdraw Resignation, To Choose Next CM

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Bihar will have a new chief minister chosen by Nitish Kumar who today refused to take back his resignation despite repeated pleas by JD(U) legislators to continue in office.

Bihar JD(U) President Basistha Narayan Singh told newsmen after a crucial meeting of the JD(U) legislature party here that it was decided that Kumar would continue to lead the party and coordinate between the party and the state government.

Time has been sought from Governor D Y Patil this evening and JD(U) President Sharad Yadav, Kumar and he would go to the Raj Bhawan, Singh said.

On the JD(U)LP meeting, the second on the issue since yesterday, he said the legislators accepted Kumar's decision to stick to his decision to resign with a heavy heart and authorised him to choose a new leader to head the JD(U) government.

He refused to provide any name as the next Chief minister and said Kumar had been authorised to decide it.

"He (Kumar) will take a decision to select a new leader to become CM soon," Singh, who was flanked by state minister Shyam Rajak and two MLCs and state party spokespersons Sanjay Singh and Neeraj Kumar, said.

Singh said Sharad Yadav and JD(U) National General Secretary K C Tyagi were present at the meeting today where he proposed the resolution accepting Kumar's resignation and authorising him to choose a new leader.

Senior minister Narendra Singh, whose name was initially doing the rounds as a replacement, seconded the resolution which was passsed unanimously by the JD(U) legislators.

The resolution, he said, welcomed Kumar's decision to resign taking moral responsbility for the party's rout in the just concluded parliamentary polls in which it won only 2 of the 40 LS seats in the state.

It expressed full confidence in Kumar and authorised him to choose a new leader to head the government in Bihar.

Emerging from the meeting, Kumar told reporters that he has taken moral responsibility for the defeat. Kumar said this a matter of principle for him and the right thing to do.

The resolution said that JD(U) would go to the assembly polls of 2015 under Kumar's leadership and he would continue to guide the party by acting as a link between the party and the government.

The JD(U)LP meeting on Sunday (18 May) failed to choose a new leader after Kumar refused to relent on his decision to quit.

In view of the legislators' vociferous demands for his continuation as chief minister he had sought time till on Monday (19 May) to convey his decision.

Today's JD(U)LP meeting like yesterday was held at Kumar's official residence at One Anne Marg from 2 pm and lasted for one hour.

(PTI)