With poll fever gradually taking over, it is time for ‘sonrise’ in Bihar this assembly election.
Dynastic politics has resurfaced in Bihar with scores of senior politicians lobbying for seats for their sons and wards.
Almost all parties have been besieged with requests. Many argue too that political parties ‘have to’ experiment with ‘fresh’ talent in view of the substantial rise in young voters.
The state assembly elections this year could well be the last election for many old warhorses, as many of them may not find a place on the list of their respective parties. Hence, the surge of requests is to help launch the political careers of their wards.
Among the established parties, the BJP and its allies-the LJP and RLSP- and RJD-JD(U) alliance are the pursued by older leaders for their wards.
Some of them are also looking at smaller parties or the new political outfits like Hindustan Awami Party ( HAM) led by former chief minister Jitan Ram Manjhi and Jan Adhikar Party (JAP) floated by expelled RJD MP Rajesh Ranjan alias Pappu Yadav, in case they do not find a place in the established ones.
The most evident case of dynastic politics is the one pushed by RJD chief Lalu Prasad, who has anointed his two sons- Tej Pratap and Tejaswi Yadav- as his political successors ahead of the Bihar assembly polls. His eldest son Tej Pratap, who was till recently not active, is now following in his father’s footsteps and is set to contest the polls from Mahua seat, presently held by JD(U)’s Ravindra Rai.
His second son Tejashwi Yadav, who was propelled by Lalu into the political arena during the Lok Sabha polls, is eyeing the Sonepur seat while his eldest daughter Misa Bharti, who unsuccessfully contested the Lok Sabha polls from Patliputra seat, may contest from Raghopur. The Raghopur seat was held by Rabri Devi before the 2010 polls.
In the BJP, it is learnt that veteran BJP leader and former union minister C P Thakur is trying for his son Vivek Thakur, former MLC, from Digha assembly seat. However, Vivek Thakur is in BJP for the last 18 years and climbed the party ladder gradually. Senior BJP leader Maharaja Kamal Singh’s grandson Shivang Vijay is trying for Dumraon seat.
BJP’s Sasaram MP, Chhedi Paswan is lobbying for his son Ravi Paswan from Chenari. Another claimant to a BJP ticket from Ramgarh seat in Kaimur district is Sudhakar Singh, son of former Bihar minister Jagadanand Singh. He had had unsuccessfully contested assembly polls in 2010.
Former minister Sitaram Singh is also trying for a BJP ticket for his son Rana Randhir Singh from Madhuban seat in East Champaran, while Satish Dubey, BJP MP, is trying to get his brother, Pradip Dubey on Shikarpur seat.
The son and son- in- law of former chief minister Jitan Ram Manjhi may also try their luck in the electoral arena this time as HAM candidates from Gaya district. While his son Santosh Manjhi is interested from Makhdumpur seat, his sonin-law is ready to try his luck from Bodh Gaya seat. The HAM has reached an understanding with the BJP to contest the polls in alliance.
Another HAM l e a d e r, Narendra Singh will once again field his two sons from Jamui and Chakai seats while Brishen Patel is set to face a challenge from his nephew on the Vaishali seat.
Former BSP leader Mahabali Singh had contested from Chainpur last time. He may also take another chance and also push his son Dharmendra Kushwaha’s case either from JD(U) or RJD.
Senior JD( U) leader Ram Lakhan Ram Raman is set to foist his son from Rajnagar in Madhubani, while Raghunath Jha is set to field his son Ajit Kumar Jha from Sheohar as RJD candidate. Similarly, former minister Dinesh Kushwaha is lobbying for his son Ajay Kushwaha from Minapur seat in Muzaffarpur district.
If the senior politicians succeed in their attempts in installing their wards, grassroots party workers, aiming to become law makers, will have no option left but to wait.