Patna: Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) leaders, at the party's national committee meeting and the 11th Open Convention at Bapu Sabhagar in Patna on Tuesday, formally announced the re-election of incarcerated Lalu Prasad Yadav as the party's national president for a record 11th time.
Despite the party's near-complete annihilation in the last few state and national elections, RJD leaders pledged to roar back into power in the 2020 Assembly elections while projecting Tejaswi Yadav as the face of the new Chief Minister of Bihar.
Accepting the early nomination of his party, Tejaswi Yadav, the de facto chief of the party in the absence of his father, said that he accepted the challenge to get rid of the BJP-led NDA government in the state and opening a nationwide agitation against the Modi government to 'free India from the misrule of Narendra Modi and Amit Shah.
"I will launch my agitation after the end of 'Kharmas' (an inauspicious period that ends on 15th January) to make the public aware of the anti-people policies of the Modi government at the Center. Lalu Prasad Yadav had warned us way back in 2014 against these people but people did not listen to him. Had we all listened to him, today there would be no talk of Citizenship Amendment Act that is a direct assault on the humanity," the former Deputy Chief Minister said.
Yadav, who himself, along with other members of his family, faces a number of corruption and tax evasion cases, said that the Modi government, using government machineries like Enforcement Directorate (ED), CBI, and Income Tax departments was crushing the voice of anyone who dared to criticize the current government.
"But the RJD or Lalu Prasad Yadav is not going to be silenced by such forces. We will gladly go the gallows fighting for the rights of the poor and destitute. In the absence of my father, it is now up to us to take up the battle against this corrupt and communal government," he said.
The RJD leader further said that the BJP stood exposed in the aftermath of the stunt it tried to pull in Maharashtra.
"In its attempt to form a government illegally in Maharashtra, it gave clean chit to Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader Ajit Pawar who was facing a number of corruption cases. If only Lalu Prasad Yadav had also taken a bath with the 'Kamal-brand soap', even he would have been exonerated of all of his corruption charges," Yadav said.
The youngest son of Lalu Prasad Yadav and Rabri Devi also took shots at Chief Minister Nitish Kumar saying he had compromised his principles because of his lust for power.
"Crime in Bihar has never been this high but he is willing to look the other way as long as it helps him remain in power," he said.
On the occasion, former Janata Dal-U leader Brishan Patel who quit the party a few years ago to join hands with Jitan Ram Manjhi and his Hindustani Awam Morcha (HAM), quit HAM on Tuesday and formally joined the RJD ahead of next year's Assembly polls.
RJD state president Jagadanand Singh, Abdul Bari Siddiqui, Ramchandra Purvey, Tej Pratap Yadav, former Nitish ally and ex-Assembly Speaker Uday Narayan Chowdhary were among others who also spoke on the occasion.BLOG COMMENTS POWERED BY DISQUS