Politics has always driven the spirit of Bihar since Independence and even earlier. Whether it was Gandhi's visit or Jayaprakash Narayan's revolution, Bihar has always been full of vigorous political activities.
It is near impossible to live in Bihar and not get affected by the political goings-on. Though I was never too interested in politics and the systems attached to it, I have been witness to a tsunami of changes since a decade now. Unfortunately, not all of these changes brought positive or improved results.
When the results of the Legislative Assembly elections were declared on 8 November, I couldn't help recalling what I had witnessed during my stay in Patna till 2010. (I moved to Pune thereafter for further studies.)
I can still remember when Nitish Kumar took oath as the Chief Minister of Bihar for the first time in 2005. I was in the 9th grade so, obviously, I had hardly any idea how the political system actually worked.
What I remember is the joy among people. The public was elated and it was visible on every corner and in the streets of Patna. I vaguely remember that while returning from school, my bus was stuck in a huge traffic jam near Gandhi Maidan where Nitish Kumar was taking the oath.
It was a historic moment. After one and half decades of mayhem indulged in by the RJD government, people had fresh hope of development and progress. And it worked well, at least for the first few years.
I remember sudden changes popping up all around the city; flyovers, malls, good electricity supply... things were changing, I could feel it. Safety and protection measures were enhanced, the police became more active. Corruption, which had become a synonym for Bihar, was dissolving at a rapid speed.
It was all going fine, the public was happy and Bihar indeed started to make some big news. Nitish Kumar's biography and the story of how he brought about numerous reforms in Bihar was compiled in a book titled "Single Man: The Life and Times of Nitish Kumar of Bihar" written by Sankarshan Thakur.
However, from 2008-09 to be exact, a dwindling effect set in. The situation was not as good as it was in the initial years of the Kumar-led JDU-NDA alliance. The government-run sectors returned to their old ways of lethargy and inefficiency. The public services diminished and Bihar began trudging an old path.
Nitish Kumar's slogan was "Sushasan against RJD's Jungle Raj". That was the key concern in his election campaign. But it was no more the primary agenda of the government.
And people began noticing the downward spiral. The public was becoming frustrated and dissatisfied. As a result, when the JDU performed poorly in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, Nitish Kumar was left with no choice but to resign from his office.
It was supposed to improve things, but it didn't.Kumar's clashes with his former ally, the BJP, and his ties with his former rival, Lalu Prasad Yadav's RJD, cost the state dearly.
After his resignation as Chief Minister in 2014, there was no proper governance or orderly system in Bihar for more than a year. Meanwhile, the newly appointed CM, Jeetan Ram Manjhi, did nothing and he only went around blaming the JDU and RJD for the abject state of things in the state. He finally decided to become part of the BJP-led NDA alliance.
In this clash of varying shades of politics, the common man was the loser. I was home back in December 2014 and sensed the visibly adverse conditions all around me.
As Patna is the capital, it was least affected, the situation in the rural parts of Bihar was far worse. All the support and help schemes to farmers were terminated and they were left with no choice but to work under worst conditions with minimum profit.
In the 2015 Legislative Assembly elections, the JDU-RJD alliance swept up the majority of votes and, once again, Nitish emerged as the leader of the state. The results astonished many.
Firstly, people were shocked to witness Nitish joining hands with RJD leader Lalu Prasad Yadav, who had numerous corruption charges against him when he was in power and whom Nitish always considered as his greatest rival. Sushasan collaborated with the Jungle Raj and it was not what a significant chunk of society was looking forward to.
Secondly, it came as a big surprise that a large section of voters had voted for the same party that had allegedly caused decline of the state. However, it seemed the rural folk in the state were satisfied.
So, what gained Nitish and Lalu caused the present victory in the Assembly election? When I analyzed the scenario, I came to only one conclusion. The BJP's defeat in Bihar happened for the same reason it was defeated in Delhi – the lack of a leading party individual with whom the voting public could have identified themselves.
Unlike Kumar, the BJP had no such candidate for the post of Chief Minister who could win the trust of the public. Narendra Modi's name was enough for the party and the BJP made a huge blunder of cashing in on his name alone.
Hopefully, the new government with Kumar at the helm can bring back the lost glories of the state and work for its development. That is what I wish for now.
But, whether it will be the return of Kumar's 'Sushasan' or another version of 'Jungle Raj', only time will tell.
(The author of this article is a young journalist writer with IBT-India edition who is a Bihari, hailing from Patna. This article reflects the writer's personal opinion and does not necessarily represent the views of IBTimes India.)