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RJD’s fault lines deepen as Tej Pratap backs own candidate from Jehanabad

Tej Pratap also hinted he would only wait for few days before he finalizes his candidate from Sheohar Lok Sabha seat.

lok sabha elections Updated: Mar 30, 2019 21:52 IST
Anirban Guha Roy
Anirban Guha Roy
Hindustan Times, Patna
Lok Sabha election 2019,Lpk Sabha election,General election
RJD founder Lalu Prasad Yadav’s elder son and MLA Tej Pratap Yadav on Saturday announced that he would back Chandraprakash Yadav from the Jehanabad Lok Sabha seat.(PTI)

The cracks in the RJD’s first family over ticket distribution widened further Saturday with party chief Lalu Prasad’s elder son Tej Pratap Yadav announcing that he would back his own candidate from the Jehanabad parliamentary seat as against the party’s official nominee.

“I want to put two candidates from Jehanabad and Sheohar seat. I have talked with opposition leader Tejashwi Prasad Yadav. Tejashwi has asked me to wait for couple of days before a decision is taken on the candidate for Sheohar,” he told reporters. The RJD has already announced Surendra Yadav, a sitting MLA, as its official nominee from the Jehanabad seat.

Incidentally, the elder Yadav scion also hinted he would only wait for few days before he finalizes his candidate from Sheohar Lok Sabha seat. Tej Pratap said he would back Chandraprakash Yadav, his choice for the Jehanabad seat and the latter would file his nomination on April 24. Jehanabad goes to polls in the seventh phase on May 19.

Many feel, the announcement of Chandra Prakash’s candidature from Jehanabad seat is a ploy by Lalu Prasad’s elder son to step up the pressure on RJD leadership for accommodating another candidate of his choice - Angesh Kumar for the Sheohar seat. Insiders said Tej Pratap also wants the party to replace Surendra Yadav with Chandra Prakash Yadav from the Jehanabad seat.

Also read: Tejashwi Yadav denies rift with elder brother Tej Pratap

The RJD has not announced the official nominee from the seat, stoking speculations that Tejashwi was considering the option of accommodating his elder brother’s recommendation. On Friday, Tejashwi had downplayed Tej Pratap’s statement that he would back the two candidates for the Lok Sabha polls. “It is good Tej Pratap has made some suggestions about candidates from some seats. He has every right to do it,” he said.

At the moment, Tej Pratap continues to adopt a belligerent stand by having stepped down from the post of patron of student wing of the party as a mark of protest against the RJD’s decision not to give much importance to his recommendations for two candidates in the official list.

“Chandra Prakash’s family is known to Lalu ji from early days as they have been active in politics for a long time. I want youths to come into politics as they can take the party ahead,” he said.

State RJD spokesperson Mritunjay Tiwary, however, said that Tej Pratap’s bid to back a candidate from Jehanabad seat had nothing to do with any kind of factionalism in the party. “It is an internal party matter. Both Tej Pratap and Tejashwi will settle the issue and all differences would be sorted out. There is still much time for election in Jehanabad seat,” Tiwary said.

First Published: Mar 30, 2019 21:21 IST