I will not contest polls: Prashant Kishor

Patna:   Election strategist-turned-politician Prashant Kishor, who is the new national Vice President of Bihar's ruling JD-U, said on Tuesday he will not contest any elections for the next 10 years to concentrate on bringing the state out of the "undeveloped" tag.

He would aim all his efforts to strengthen the Janata Dal-United party that he joined in September, Kishor said ending all speculation as he addressed the youth members of his party.

"I will not contest any elections, including for the Lok Sabha or the Rajya Sabha, for the next 10 years... and serve Bihar. My goal is to work to help Bihar get into the 10 developed states of the country," said the founder of the Indian Political Action Committee (IPAC), who was appointed JD-U's No.2 on October 16. 

There was speculation in political circles here that the former BJP poll strategist, who played a role in Narendra Modi's party securing an absolute majority in the 2014 general elections, would contest 2019 Lok Sabha polls.

Chief Minister Nitush Kumar, who is also the JD-U president, was expected to soon send Kishor, 41, to Rajya Sabha. 

Instead, Kishor said he would "work on the strategy to ensure a strong JD-U by attracting youth and students into its fold" and put his entire time and energy into strengthening the party in Bihar and on the national level. 

Kishor's elevation by Nitish Kumar was viewed as a political masterstroke by the Chief Minister, who plans to put his best foot forward ahead of 2019 Lok Sabha polls 

"In JD-U and outside, Prashant Kishor is considered close to Nitish Kumar. More than anyone he enjoys trust and confidence of the Chief Minister," a senior party leader said.

The former UN official, who founded the Citizens for Accountable Governance (CAG), had also successfully ran the campaign of the Nitish Kumar-led Grand Alliance during the 2015 Bihar Assembly election. 

The Grand Alliance comprised the JD-U, Lalu Prasad's Rashtriya Janata Dal and the Congress and it had humbled the BJP-led alliance. 

In last two days, Kishor has been busy meeting and interacting with members of the JD-U's youth and students wing. He has asked each one of them to enlist 200 more active members.

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