Krishna Nandan Verma has been Bihar’s education minister since 2017.
The veteran Janata Dal United leader won the 2015 Assembly election from Ghosi constituency in Jehanabad district, but is contesting from Jehanabad city this time. “My job is to do as the party leadership decides,” Verma explained when asked why he had switched seats.
He wouldn’t admit, of course, that there is palpable resentment against him in Ghosi. Indeed, in the last few years, the people in the constituency have several times hit the roads to protest against him, apparently for failing his responsibilities as their legislator.
What about Verma’s record as the education minister?
Bihar continues to supply visuals of mass cheating in exams; it is not unusual for high schools to have just three teachers even as three lakh posts of teacher remain vacant; there are “schools” with new buildings but no teachers; completing a bachelor’s degree in three years at many of the state’s universities is no less than hitting the jackpot.
In an interview ahead of the Assembly election, Newslaundry questioned Verma about his record as the education minister. We also asked him about Bihar’s changing political landscape and the challenges facing his party in this election. Verma said he was confident that the JDU-BJP alliance under Nitish Kumar would return to power.
A version of this report was previously published on Newslaundry Hindi.
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