Bihar is the third largest state in terms of population, and is a key state politically. Bihar’s state of affairs including administrative and governance system has seen improvement in the recent past and this makes the current elections a litmus test for what direction the state will steer itself into the future.
Bihar announced earlier this year that it had notched an 11% GDP growth for last five years, making it the second largest growing economy in the country, this news was greeted with a sign that India's most backward area has been transformed for better. However, Bihar also has significant challenges when it comes to addressing the basic needs of its people. It is this dichotomy between the immense possibilities that Bihar holds out and the massive challenges it faces to ensure that the growth reaches its people and is sustainable.
Though the turnaround story of Bihar is impressive, all the sectors have not fared well in the state. The worst scenario can be seen in terms of energy security, where not a single project could take off due to lack of resources. With one of the worst power situations in the country, it is becoming increasingly clear that electricity will soon become one of the bottlenecks for Bihar’s development. The state is looking to expand its power production via investment in large thermal power plants and hydro projects. However, these projects will take time to be implemented and till then Bihar's growth would continue to be effected by crippling power shortages.
The government who can deliver ‘energy now’ will hold sway with voters in the coming elections.