When RJD chief Lalu Prasad was asked a couple of years ago, if his brother-in-laws— Sadhu and Subhash Yadav — were running a parallel power centre, he had famously said: “I am the thermal power station. They are sub-stations. If I choose to shutdown, they will be gone.” That might have been true then, not any more.
Five years after RJD’s poll debacle in the October 2005 elections, Lalu’s kin and some of his trusted lieutenants are deserting him. After Sadhu left RJD in 2009 and joined Congress, it is now Subhash’s turn to follow suit. On Monday, Subhash announced his exit from the RJD calling Lalu a “spent force” and advised him to “retire from politics”.
There are indications that Subhash might also join the Congress, which is gearing up to put up a tough fight against RJD in the coming polls.
“He (Lalu) cannot win. It is high time he retired He is 70 and has surpassed the retirement age of 65” Subhash quipped on Monday, adding that the “RJD had become a party of sycophants”, where sincere workers like him no longer had a place. Lalu, however, seemed unperturbed. He said, “I wish him luck. He has the right to choose. But he cannot take away the fact, that I will remain his jijaji (brother-in-law).”
Subhash was reportedly unhappy with Lalu because he did not renew his Rajya Sabha term, which expired last May.
“I am not a greedy politician. I have left RJD on principled grounds,” Subhash said, as he praised Lalu calling him his ‘guru in politics’. But the very next moment he was all fire and claimed that the RJD-LJP alliance will not get more than 25 seats.
On Saturday, Akhilesh Singh, one of Lalu’s close aides left the party accusing Lalu of neglecting the upper castes in distribution of tickets. He was followed by Anil Kumar, MLA from Bhore Assembly constituency.
“...There are speculations, some more top leaders might leave the party, which now faces serious internal infighting... It is an alarming sign... But what can one do,” said a senior RJD leader.