Patna, March 10: The ruling Janata Dal-United (JD-U) on Tuesday issued a whip to its legislators, the dissidents included, to vote on Wednesday for Chief Minister Nitish Kumar to prove his majority in the assembly.
JD-U chief whip Sharavan Kumar, who is also the parliamentary affairs minister, said the whip was also applicable to JD-U rebels led by former chief minister Jitan Ram Manjhi.
"Any legislator found voting against the whip will loss membership of the state assembly," Sharavan told the media.
Nitish Kumar will seek a vote of confidence in the assembly on Wednesday, 17 days after he took oath of office, a party leader said on Tuesday.
Nearly a dozen rebel legislators have thrown their lot with Manjhi.
Nitish Kumar is confident of proving his majority. The JD-U has the support of its allies -- the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD), the Congress and the Communist Party of India (CPI).
Nitish Kumar resigned as chief minister last year after the JD-U's rout in the Lok Sabha polls.
Manjhi, who was made the chief minister in May 2014, resigned on February 20 after a political crisis in the state.
In the 243-member assembly, the JD-U has 115 legislators. The party has the support of 24 RJD legislators, five of the Congress, two independents and a CPI member.
The Bharatiya Janata Party has 88 legislators and it is supported by three independents.