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Monday, Oct 14, 2019

Lalu to organise another ‘grand’ rally against Centre, Bihar govt soon   

The date of the rally against the alleged failures of the NDA governments at the Centre and in Bihar will be finalised after consultation with RJD leaders.

india Updated: Oct 20, 2017 16:49 IST
Anirban Guha Roy
Anirban Guha Roy
Hindustan Times, Patna
Lalu Prasad had organised ‘Desh Bachao, BJP Baghao’ rally at Gandhi Maidan in Patna on August 27.
Lalu Prasad had organised ‘Desh Bachao, BJP Baghao’ rally at Gandhi Maidan in Patna on August 27. (AP Dube/HT file photo)

Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) president Lalu Prasad said he would organise another “grand” rally in Patna to unite opposition parties against the alleged failures of the NDA governments at the Centre and in Bihar.

“We will hold a grand rally against anti-people policies of the state and central governments. The date of the rally will be finalised after consultation with party leaders,” Prasad told reporters on Diwali day (Thursday).

Prasad had on August 27 organised ‘Desh Bachao, BJP Baghao’ rally at Gandhi Maidan in Patna, which was attended by West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee, rebel Janata Dal (United) leader Sharad Yadav and senior Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad among others.

Reacting to Prasad’s announcement, Union minister Giriraj Singh described the RJD’s “grand rally” plan as just another gimmick. “Lalu organises rallies just to make people laugh. There is nothing more to it,” Singh said.

Having lost power in the state and facing probe by CBI and Enforcement Directorate into various corruption charges, Prasad and his family members celebrated the festival of lights in a subdued manner. Many RJD leaders and party workers did visit 10, Circular Road residence of Prasad’s wife Rabri Devi in Patna to extend Diwali greetings, there was little for them to cheer about.

Prasad, however, looked upbeat and did not shy away from taking potshots at the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for “politicising” the Diwali festival by organising a big event at Ayodhya.

“Politicising a festival is wrong. The BJP is now cheating gods. Nobody has stopped people from performing pujas and rituals,” he said, adding that Lord Rama would himself teach a lesson to the BJP.

“Lord Rama resides in the heart of all people of the country. The BJP will pay a price for cheating gods,” Prasad said.

In his witty ways, Prasad also slammed demonetisation, saying that Goddess Lakshmi — the deity of wealth and prosperity — “had left the country” because of the currency recall drive undertaken by Prime Minister Narendra Modi last year. “They have destroyed wealth and prosperity in households by forcing people to deposit all their savings in banks by pushing demonetisation. Now, see, there is all round depression and poverty in the country,” Prasad said.

The intent of RJD chief’s statement was to describe demonetisation as a wrong move and how ordinary people of the country had lost their savings due to swapping of currency.

“I appeal to the people of the country not to get mislead by the RSS and Modi,” he said.

Meanwhile, RJD insiders said Prasad’s plan for another rally was aimed at keeping his MLAs intact and prepare for the 2019 Lok Sabha elections. The party insiders also felt that the RJD chief wanted to galvanise his party workers from early next year as he was apprehensive that assembly elections in Bihar could be held simultaneously with Lok Sabha polls in 2019. “Organising a rally is a best way to keep the party’s rank and file busy. Even MLAs want to remain busy so that they could remain close to the people of their constituencies,” said a senior party leader..

First Published: Oct 20, 2017 16:41 IST

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