Digvijaya Singh's son in alliance with Bihar's ex-royalty

  • Rai Atul Krishna, Hindustan Times, Patna
  • Updated: Mar 17, 2015 15:54 IST

As AICC general secretary in charge of Bihar (2005-07), his penchant for 'social engineering' had kept the Congress-Rashtriya Janata Dal alliance afloat even after the two allies were trounced by the Nitish Kumar-led National Democratic Alliance in the 2005 assembly poll.

A decade later, senior Congress leader Digvijaya Singh is ready to strike a different kind of alliance in Bihar - a matrimonial one.

Singh's son Jaivardhan is set to marry Sreejamya Shahi, daughter of Shattrundam Shahi of Dumaria estate in West Chaparan district of north Bihar.

"The two are already engaged. The tilak ceremony is slated for April 21 at Raghogarh (the princely seat of Singh) and the wedding will be held in New Delhi on May 19," said a friend of the girl's family.

Jaivardhan is a sitting Congress MLA from Raghogarh in Guna district of Madhya Pradesh and his Facebook posts show he worries a lot about the farmers in the state now ruled by the Bharatiya Janata Party. His father served two terms as chief minister between 1993 and 1998 and 1998 and 2003.

Twenty nine-year-old Jaivardhan, called JV and Baba by his family and friends, has studied at Dehradun's Doon school and Columbia University in the US. He is Singh's only son.

Sreejamya, who went to Ajmer's Mayo College Girls' School, works with leading chartered accountancy firm Thakur, Vaidyanath Aiyer and Co in Mumbai. The company was founded by former Union minister late Rameshwar Thakur.

Sources close to the Dumaria family said the impending wedding would have all the trappings of a royal wedding.

Like Jaivardhan, Sreejamya's family, too, is pretty well-heeled, politically.

Her great grandfather, Shattru Mardan Shahi, was elected to the Bihar legislative sssembly in 1964 and became the Education minister of Bihar in 1969 "after declining the post of Chief Minister and offering it to BP Mandal", according to a website ('members.iinet.net.au').

This website describes him as "a politician who shaped the politics of Bihar, lived lavishly like any other Zamindar or Maharaja in the Pre-Independence era. His interests were no less than the ones of any Maharaja at that time, particularly with his fondness for imported luxury cars".

Sreejamya's grandfather, Ran Vijaya Shahi, followed his father into politics, serving as an MLA in Bihar for two terms (1990-2000).

"Given such a background of the Dumaria family, this matrimonial alliance surely carries the potential to trend politically. Although it is difficult to fathom at this stage what shape it will take, there is a possibility you'll find a member of the family contesting the Bihar assembly poll due later this year," said a relative.

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