Twenty-four hours after Lalu Prasad’s daughter Misa Bharti failed to meet and placate him despite waiting for him at his Delhi residence all day, dissident RJD MP Ram Kripal Yadav said all options were open for him now that he had quit all party posts.
“For me all options are now open. There is no point in speculating because I have not taken any decision,” Yadav told The Indian Express when asked if he would be joining the BJP or Ram Vilas Paswan’s LJP, which has openly welcomed him into its fold.
He did not comment on whether the BJP was “untouchable” for him. Instead, he simply said that of late, a lot of people from the “secular” camp had joined the National Democratic Alliance. “Paswan, Jagadambika Pal, Purandeswari and others have joined the NDA. Everyone seems to be opening their doors to me when my own party closed its doors,” he said.
He said that “contrary to what is being projected”, he had, in fact, spoken to Misa over phone when she was waiting for him on Friday. “I told her not to wait for me as I was busy somewhere and that she should come back later,” Yadav said, adding that Misa’s overtures were a “ploy from the party”. “But I accept I had become a bit emotionally weak at her gesture,” he said.
Moreover, Yadav sought to clarify that he had been working with the party cadre at Pataliputra for years with the intention of contesting from there. “I had told Laluji about my wish one year ago. Recently too, I had communicated my desire through some of his close aides, so he very well knew what I wanted,” he said. As a “consolation”, Yadav had been offered the Madhepura seat but he said that he had no intention of accepting the offer.
“I have cultivated the Pataliputra seat; why should I now go to Madhepura? I had said that only if Laluji or madam (Lalu’s wife, Rabri Devi) contested from Pataliputra, I would forgo my claim. But the ultimate decision was taken without taking me into confidence,” said the former party general secretary.
“They (RJD) are now saying I am not a resident of Pataliputra. Please note that I have a decades old residence in Naubatpur and I have land there as well. Let anyone take a tour of the constituency with me and I will show you who the workers and voters really want,” he said
Having stood up Misa at his residence, Yadav said he had no intention of doing so, but Misa arrived unannounced. “I’m indebted to the RJD because the party has given me everything that I am today,” he said.
Commenting on the developments, LJP’s Ram Vilas Paswan said on Saturday that the decision was ultimately for Yadav to take. “He has been a long-time family friend. We welcome him, but let him take his own decision,” he told reporters.