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Amid rift with JD-U, Paswan firmly stands by son’s decisions

Union Minister and LJP founder Ram Vilas Paswan, whose son Chirag Paswan is currently engaged in a bitter battle for political space with NDA partner JD-U in poll-bound Bihar, today said he will firmly stand with Chirag in his decisions related to the party’s affairs in the state.

Tweeting a set of messages with deep political meaning, Paswan, who holds the Ministry of Food, Consumer Affairs and Public Distribution in the Narendra Modi government, said despite being ill during the Covid crisis he refused to get hospitalised because of his responsibilities.

Paswan said his health had started to deteriorate, but to ensure that the work does not suffer he did not get hospitalised. “I continuously served the country and made every effort to ensure that food reaches on time everywhere,” he added.

Paswan said he finally got admitted to a hospital at Chirag’s insistence. “I am happy that my son Chirag is with me at this time. Besides taking care of me, he is also fulfilling his responsibilities towards the party,” Paswan added.

Chirag is the LJP president. He said he would firmly back every decision Chirag takes for the betterment of the party.

Notably it was at Chirag’s insistence that the LJP joined hands with the BJP ahead of the 2014 elections. However, Chirag is now at the logger-heads with its Bihar NDA partner, CM and JD-U leader Nitish Kumar, who the BJP has projected as the face of the alliance in the upcoming elections.

At a recent meeting of the LJP’s parliamentary board, many members expressed resentment against Nitish’s leadership. Another meeting is expected later this week when a decision on the alliance may be taken.

It is possible that the LJP, which has decided to draw up a list of 143 candidates to pitch against JD-U, may contest these elections outside the NDA. However, it will very much remain a part of the Central dispensation where Paswan is the Cabinet minister. Political observers believe the arrangement may actually work in the BJP’s favour.