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Patna : Snubbed by the BJP in the by-election to a Rajya Sabha seat in Bihar, LJP president Chirag Paswan, MP, on November 28, 2020, said that the seat belonged to the saffron party and it was free to take a decision about whom to field. The seat had fallen vacant following the death of Chirag Paswan’s father and Lok Janshakti Party founder Ram Vilas Paswan.
The BJP has nominated former Bihar deputy chief minister Sushil Kumar Modi for the seat. The then Union Minister, Ram Vilas Paswan had got elected from the seat in 2019 after it fell vacant following his cabinet colleague Ravi Shankar Prasad’s election to the Lok Sabha from Patna Sahib parliamentary constituency. “The seat belonged to the BJP and it is for the party to decide which candidate from which party to field in the by-election,” Chirag, 38, told mediapersons at a function held to celebrate his party’s 20th foundation day.
Subdued following the drubbing in the recent Bihar Assembly elections, Chirag asked the party rank and file to gear up for the next assembly polls which could take place “any time”. He reiterated it in a letter addressed to LJP workers and shared with the media.
Replying to a query, he said that he saw “fresh elections taking place any time in Bihar, given the way the new government is functioning”.
In a written message to party workers, Chirag defended his decision to go solo in the assembly polls saying, “We had to make a choice between accepting the NDA’s offer of only 15 seats despite being a party with six members in the Lok Sabha and one in the Rajya Sabha, or engage in a friendly fight to preserve our honour.” In the one-page letter, Paswan refrained from making any remark against Bihar CM Nitish Kumar whom he had targeted during electioneering for Bihar Assembly polls.
The Jamui MP also deplored the heated exchanges between the chief minister and Leader of the Opposition Tejashwi Yadav on the floor of the assembly on November 27, 2020, and said both shared the blame for the unsavoury turn of events. “I would not like to take sides in this matter. From both sides many personal attacks were made,” said Paswan.