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Friday, Nov 22, 2019

‘I’ve returned,’ RJD’s Tej Pratap Yadav says he is back to active politics

Yadav refused to take any queries on his decision to divorce Aishwarya Rai, daughter of fellow RJD MLA Chandrika Rai, whom he had married in May this year.

india Updated: Dec 17, 2018 00:01 IST
Press Trust of India
Press Trust of India
Patna
Rashtriya Janata Dal MLA Tej Pratap Yadav addresses a press confrence at party office, in Patna on December 16.
Rashtriya Janata Dal MLA Tej Pratap Yadav addresses a press confrence at party office, in Patna on December 16.(PTI Photo)
         

Lalu Prasad’s elder son and RJD MLA Tej Pratap Yadav on Sunday made a sudden appearance at the party’s state headquarters in Patna and held a long discussion with youth and student wing workers and declared he was back to active politics.

Yadav reached the RJD office at Veer Chand Patel Marg in the afternoon wearing his trademark ‘bhasma tilak’. He has been keeping a low profile for the past several months on account of alleged differences with his younger brother Tejashwi Yadav, a claim he has refused, and estrangement with his wife of six months from whom he has sought divorce. After holding over two-hour discussions with the party workers, the former Bihar minister addressed a press conference where he showered praise on Rahul Gandhi for leading the Congress to victory in the assembly polls in Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan.

He asserted that he considered the BJP-RSS combine as the principal opponent in Bihar. “I have returned to Bihar after receiving the blessings of Lord Krishna during my pilgrimage. The state will emerge as Kurukshetra in the Lok Sabha polls and our detractors will be slayed with the Sudarshan Chakra of popular vote,” he said.

Yadav refused to take any queries on his decision to divorce Aishwarya Rai, daughter of fellow RJD MLA Chandrika Rai, whom he had married in May this year.

Replying to a query, he reiterated that he saw Tejashwi as “Arjuna” and vowed to play the role of Lord Krishna who was the warrior prince’s charioteer in the Mahabharata.

Speculations have been rife that Tej Pratap Yadav has been unhappy over being overshadowed by his younger brother, who is considered a favourite of their father and has emerged as the RJD’s de facto leader in the absence of Lalu Prasad, who is serving sentences in fodder scam cases. There have also been reports that Tej Pratap enjoys the support of their eldest sister Misa Bharti, the only daughter of Lalu Prasad and Rabri Devi to have entered politics and is said to be uncomfortable with the leadership of the more suave and savvy younger brother. Tej Pratap, however, evaded queries ion it.

He also said he had no plans to return to 10, Circular Road, the bungalow allotted to his mother in her capacity as a former Chief Minister in a clear hint that he was still upset with her over her not supporting his decision to divorce Aishwarya.

“I have requested the state government to allot a bungalow in my name. I have also tried to telephonically contact Chief Minister Nitish Kumar over the issue,” he said.

Earlier this year, Tej Pratap Yadav had vacated the bungalow allotted to him while he was the health minister, claiming Nitish Kumar and his deputy Sushil Kumar Modi had “released ghosts” inside the premises. Tejashwi, however, continues to occupy the bungalow allotted to him while he was the Deputy CM and is fighting a legal battle against efforts by the state government to get him evicted.