Fresh faces abound on Bihar’s political horizon

  • Anil Kumar, Hindustan Times, Patna
  • Updated: Nov 17, 2015 14:01 IST
Lalu Prasad’s sons, Tej Pratap and Tejashwi, are among the young faces that registered their maiden wins. (UNI Photo)

If the under-30 voters — constituting 31% of the total electorate (6.69 crore) — were the most sought after in Bihar assembly elections this time, they also scored high in ensuring the success of as many as 99 first-time legislators for the 16th legislative assembly.

While the first-timers account for 41% of the total of the 243-member strong state assembly, the percentage of members belonging to the 25-50 years bracket also recorded a jump — going up to 127 — to cross the halfway mark at 52%.

The RJD, which emerged as the single largest party with 80 MLAs, led the charge, as almost half of its total strength comprises first-time legislators. The party also romped home with the maximum number of youngest members — with RJD chief Lalu Prasad’s two sons, Tej Pratap and Tejashawi Yadav, registering their maiden wins from Mahua and Raghopur, respectively.

A party-wise age analysis of MLAs this assembly polls, carried out by the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR), shows that the RJD has eight legislators in the age bracket of 25-35 years in comparison to four from the Congress and one each from the JD(U), BJP and Independents.

In the process, the RJD also turned out to be a successful launch pad for the maiden entry of politicians’ sons to the state assembly. Besides Tej Pratap and Tejashwi, sons of former Union minister Ashraf Ali Fatmi and former minister Shivanand Tiwari — Faraz Fatmi and Rahul Tiwary respectively — also became first-time MLAs, along with Jaivardhan Yadav, the grandson of former Union minister Ram Lakhan Singh Yadav.

The long list of first-time MLAs from the RJD camp also includes successful women candidates who made their maiden entry to the state assembly. These include Magita Devi (Runnisaidpur), Ejya Yadav (Mohiuddinnagar), Saroj Yadav (Barhara), Savitri Devi (Chakai), Aneeta Devi (Nokha), and Rekha Devi (Masaurhi).

Other women candidates, who emerged victorious in the assembly elections for the first time, include Congress legislators Ameeta Bhusan (Begusarai), Bhawna Jha (Benipatti) and Poonam Paswan (Korha reserved constituency), BJP MLA Gayatri Devi Yadav, JD(U) legislator Veena Bharti, besides Baby Kumari, who defeated JD(U) veteran Ramai Ram as an independent. The 16th Bihar legislative assembly has a total of 28 women MLAs.

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