LJP leader Chirag Paswan addressing a press conference at his residence in New Delhi on Wednesday. (ARVIND YADAV/HT PHOTO.)
LJP leader Chirag Paswan addressing a press conference at his residence in New Delhi on Wednesday. (ARVIND YADAV/HT PHOTO.)

‘They want to divide and rule’: Chirag Paswan blames JD(U) for split in party

Refusing to budge from his post, Paswan said that he had been elected as party president as per the constitution of the party and also alleged that people including party leaders connived against him when he was ill.
PUBLISHED ON JUN 16, 2021 04:59 PM IST

Facing rebellion within the party, Jamui MP and LJP leader Chirag Paswan on Wednesday blamed the ruling JD(U) in Bihar for engineering the split in the party.

Camping in New Delhi, Paswan in his first interaction with the media after the rumblings in his party began on Sunday, also targeted his uncle Pashupati Kumar Paras for his non-co-operation. “During the Bihar assembly polls, and even before that and after the poll results were announced, some people particularly those belonging to JD(U) had been continuously trying to break the party. We contested the assembly polls with full support of the party,” he said and alleged, “My uncle (Paras) did not play any role in the election campaign. Some of my party MPs kept themselves busy.”

Without pointedly naming Nitish Kumar, Paswan alleged that the JD(U) first caused a division between Dalits and Maha Dalits in Bihar and had now targeted the LJP. “They want to divide and rule,” he said.

The LJP leader said people including party leaders connived against him when he was ill. “I tried to talk to my uncle but was unsuccessful. I tried to keep my family and party together,” he added.

Refusing to budge from his post, Paswan said that he had been elected as party president as per the constitution of the party. “The leader of the house is decided by the parliamentary committee and not by the MPs. I have been informed that they have removed me from the post of president. A party president is only removed in case of death or if he resigns,” argued Paswan.

He also made it clear that he was not going to buckle under pressure. “It’s going to be a long-drawn legal battle and the people of Bihar are with me,” he said.

Earlier, in the day, Paswan wrote a letter to Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla questioning his decision to appoint Paras as the leader of the LJP Parliamentary Party.

“Since Article 26 of the Constitution of the LJP empowers the central Parliamentary Board of the party to decide who would be the leader of the party in the Lok Sabha, hence the decision announcing Pashupati Kumar Paras, MP, as leader of LJP in the Lok Sabha is contrary to that provision of the constitution of LJP,” Paswan wrote in his letter to the Speaker.

He requested the Speaker to review the decision and issue a new circular in his favour.

The newly-elected president of the party, Pashupati Kumar Paras got a tumultuous welcome by party leaders. “Decision on party president will be taken on Thursday,” he said on arrival.

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