Nitish Kumar close confidante and former IAS officer joins JD(U)

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Former IAS officer Manish Verma joined the JD(U) in Patna on July 9, 2024.
| Photo Credit: ANI

Former IAS officer and a close confidante of Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, Manish Kumar Verma, joined Janata Dal (United) in the presence of party national working president Sanjay Jha and State unit president Umesh Kushwaha during a function held at the party office in Patna on July 9.

Mr. Jha handed over the membership receipt to Mr. Verma.

Mr. Verma served as an Additional Adviser to the Chief Minister and a member of the Bihar State Disaster Management Authority. During the National Executive meeting held in Delhi last week, there was talk of Mr. Verma getting some big responsibility.

Mr. Verma hails from the Nalanda district and belongs to Kurmi caste. The Odisha cadre 2000 batch IAS officer’s first posting was in Kalahandi. He then became a Sub-Divisional Magistrate (SDM) in Gunupur, Raigarh.

After joining the party, Mr. Verma said, “For me it is an emotional moment and I will try my level best to work for the party. Anybody can get inspired from Nitish Kumar ji, I have learnt a lot from him while working with him for almost eight years. Whatever responsibility will be given to me, I will do my best.”

An IIT Delhi alumnus, Mr. Verma worked in Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) before cracking Civil Services in 2000. He was in Odisha for 12 years before he was sent on deputation to Bihar the same year. 

He also served as the District Magistrate in Odisha. During his deputation in Bihar, he was also made the District Magistrate of Patna and Purnea apart from becoming Secretary to the Chief Minister from 2016 to 2021. He did not return to Odisha and resigned in 2021.

During his tenure as Patna District Magistrate, a major incident took place in 2014 during Ravan Vadh ceremony in Gandhi Maidan. There was a stampede during the ceremony and 33 people lost their lives. Bihar Chief Minister did not take any action against Mr. Verma. He was criticised by the Opposition because Mr. Verma was celebrating his son’s birthday next to the Maidan at Hotel Maurya when the stampede took place.

After Manish Verma resigned, Mr. Kumar created the post of additional adviser for him in the Cabinet meeting on February 2, 2022.

For the last two years, Mr. Verma has been constantly showing active interest in politics. He was found touring Nalanda along with Chief Minister and was also seen attending the meeting of party workers during the Lok Sabha election.

Party sources said that Mr. Kumar is mulling to make Mr. Verma his successor because he trusts him a lot.

This is not the first time that Mr. Kumar has shown interest in the bureaucrats. In the past also, he trusted diplomats but all of them either left him or Mr. Kumar showed them the door.

Former IAS officer RCP Singh was very close to Mr. Kumar but at last he was shown the door after he turned rebel. He too was made the national president of the party and became Minister in the Centre. Former IAS officer N.K. Singh and former diplomat Pavan Kumar Verma were also in JD(U) but they left the party.

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