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Knives out in RJD: MLA seeks Tejashwi's resignation

Last updated on: May 27, 2019 18:59 IST

Else, warns rebel party MLA, the RJD will split.

IMAGE: Rashtriya Janata Dal leader Tejashwi Yadav, right, with his elder brother Tej Pratap Yadav, left.

The simmering discontent in the Rashtriya Janata Dal has come to the fore.

Following its rout in the Lok Sabha election -- where the party failed to win even a single seat in Bihar -- senior RJD legislator Maheshwar Prasad Yadav on Monday asked Tejashwi Yadav to resign as Leader of the Opposition in the state assembly, taking moral responsibility for the drubbing.

Alleging that parivarwad (nepotism) has cost the RJD party dear, Maheshwar Prasad Yadav, the RJD MLA from the Gaighat assembly constituency in Muzaffarpur district, claimed the party would break if his demand is not met.

'As a party MLA, I would request Tejaswhi Yadav to resign as LoP taking moral responsibility for the Lok Sabha poll debacle and appoint any other senior party leader hailing from a caste other than Yadav to the post, failing which the party will face a crushing defeat in the 2020 assembly election,' Maheshwar Prasad Yadav told reporters.

The RJD is the second member of the five-party mahagathbandhan to face the heat after the resounding defeat in Bihar.

Except for Kisanganj, which was won by the Congress, the Bharatiya Janata Party, the Janata Dal-United and Lok Janshakti Party combine won 39 out of Bihar's 40 Lok Sabha seats.

Earlier, another mahagathbandan constituent, the Upendra Kushwaha-led Rashtriya Lok Samata Party's three legislators -- two MLAs and one MLC -- merged with the JD-U on Sunday.

 

'If my demand (to appoint someone else as LoP) is not fulfilled, then the legislature party will break as several legislators are with me,' Maheshwar Prasad Yadav claimed.

Asked whether he has the support of two-third of the RJD legislature party to avoid disqualification under the anti-defection law, Maheshwar Prasad Yadav answered in the affirmative, saying that he has the support of large numbers of party MLAs.

"No one wants to board the sinking ship...but please, don't ask me the names and numbers at the moment," Maheshwar Prasad Yadav told the media.

IMAGE: Rashtriya Janata Dal rebel MLA Maheshwar Prasad Yadav.

Asked whether he would attend the two-day RJD meeting on May 28 and 29 to discuss the election debacle, the rebel MLA said he would abstain till his demand is met.

Maheshwar Prasad Yadav, who has been seen in Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar's company, said Lalu Prasad Yadav's affection for his family has cost the party and the RJD would not have staged a comeback in the 2015 assembly poll if the RJD had not stitched an alliance with Nitish Kumar's JD-U.

"It was because of Nitish Kumar that the RJD came to power in 2015," he said, adding that Lalu chose to anoint both his sons as deputy chief minister and minister in the Nitish Kumar-led government ignoring senior RJD leaders.

"When Nitish Kumar parted ways, the RJD chief again foisted Tejashwi and wife Rabri Devi as LoP in the assembly ands legislative council respectively," Maheshwar Prasad said.

"I had opposed the party chief's move to make Rabri Devi as CM in 1997 and had suggested he appoint any other senior leader as CM, but he ignored my opinion," he added.

"The people in the Lok Sabha election have thoroughly rejected the RJD for carrying out parivarwad politics."

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