Former Bihar Chief Minister Rabri Devi today categorically dispelled media reports suggesting a rift between her two sons – Tej Pratap Yadav and Tejashwi Yadav — saying the ‘family is united’. Speaking to India Today post the birthday celebrations of RJD supremo Lalu Prasad Yadav, who turns 71 today, Rabri said that the whole family and the party is united and reports of differences are wrong.
“Today is his (Lalu Prasad Yadav) birthday. Like every year, the entire state is celebrating his birthday, we also are participating in the celebrations,” she said. “Everything is alright in the family, nothing has happened. Even we had no idea what had happened… we came to know of this only when we saw news channels.”
Rabri was reacting to reports of a rift between her sons Tej Pratap and Tejaswhi over final a say in the party. Tej Pratap had last week told media that there is no discipline in the party and no one listens to him.
When Tejashwi was asked about the said differences, he replied: “Why do we always have to submit proof that everything is fine? Everything is alright and will always remain the same. There are only a few people who feel so despite making several attempts to create trouble, sending Laluji to jail… there’s nothing like that.”
“He (Lalu Yadav) is a source of positive energy and inspiration for us. We pray for his good health and long life,” he added.
His elder brother Tej Pratap also replied similarly when asked about his unhappiness. “Everything is okay. There is no rift (within us).” However, he wasn;t as coy as his brother when it came to the internal differences. When asked whether his wish to appoint Rajendra Paswan as the general secretary of the party was fulfilled, Tej Pratap responded in the affirmative. “Yes it has been done.”
Paswan’s appointment was reportedly being pushed by Tejashwi and his party’s reluctance to appoint him to the post is believed to have caused the outburst over the alleged differences. Paswan is believed to be a close aide of the former Health minister. On Saturday, he had told media that ‘some people in the party were not listening to him’ and sought action against elements in the party for trying to create rifts between him and his younger brother.
Rabri Devi who was speaking to the channel with her both sons, immediately jumped to Tej Pratap’s rescue saying, “Everything is alright. There is nothing wrong in our party or in the family.”
Tejashwi is largely seen as the heir apparent to Lalu Prasad Yadav’s legacy in politics. In the erstwhile Grand Alliance government, Tejashwi was made the Deputy CM whereas Tej Pratap was made Cabinet minister. Many RJD leaders have already called for projecting Tejashwi Yadav as the chief ministerial candidate for next assembly polls.