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Ex-IAS Officer Manish Kumar Verma Joins JD(U), Sparks Speculation on Future Role

By Neeraj Kumar

Patna, July 9 : Another IAS officer, Manish Kumar Verma, joined Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar’s party, Janata Dal (United), on Tuesday. Manish Kumar Verma, an Odisha cadre IAS officer, has been associated with Nitish Kumar for a long time after taking voluntary retirement (VRS). Earlier, RCP Singh also entered politics with JD(U) after taking VRS. Both RCP Singh and Manish Verma are from Nalanda.

Sanjay Jha, after becoming the working president of JD(U), facilitated Manish Verma’s entry into the party. Senior party leader and Water Resources Minister Vijay Kumar Chaudhary were also present on this occasion. Manish Kumar Verma is currently the additional advisor to the Chief Minister, and there has been speculation for some time that Nitish Kumar may consider him as his successor.

Manish Kumar Verma hails from Nalanda and shares the same caste and familial connections with Chief Minister Nitish Kumar. An Odisha cadre IAS officer since 2000, Verma initially served as a sub-collector in Kalahandi, Odisha, and later held the post of SDM in Gunpur, Raigarh. He was appointed as the District Magistrate (DM) of Malkangiri district after five years of service.

Until 2012, he served as the DM of several districts in Odisha, after which he transferred to Bihar on an inter-state deputation for five years. During this period, he was the DM of Patna and later served as the Secretary to the Chief Minister. Upon completing his tenure on March 23, 2018, he was recalled to Odisha by the Cabinet Appointment Committee of the Government of India, but Verma chose to take VRS instead.

In 2014, Manish Kumar Verma served as the District Magistrate of Patna and later as the DM of Purnia. During his tenure as Patna DM, a major incident occurred during Ravan Vadh in Gandhi Maidan, resulting in several fatalities. After taking VRS, Chief Minister Nitish Kumar appointed him as additional advisor in a cabinet meeting on February 2, 2022, a position he has held since.

Manish Kumar Verma has been increasingly active in politics, frequently touring Nalanda and meeting workers during the Lok Sabha elections. He has been updating his political activities through social media and receiving support and welcome messages from JD(U) leaders even before formally joining the party.

As he formally joins JD(U), there is much speculation about the role and responsibilities Nitish Kumar will assign to him. While there were discussions about him contesting elections from Nalanda, he did not run. In the national executive meeting held in Delhi, it was suggested he might be given a significant role in the party, but no specific responsibilities were assigned at that time. Now that he has officially joined JD(U), it remains to be seen what position he will take up in the party.

 

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