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Bihar Polls: BJP office not quite deserted, party workers express anger

At various points during the day, journalists and RPF personnel threatened to outnumber party workers at the BJP office, but a group of youths saved the day.

BJP office in Patna Sunday. (Source: Express Photo by Prashant Ravi) BJP office in Patna Sunday. (Source: Express Photo by Prashant Ravi)

At least the firecrackers and the colours did not go waste.

Ankit Kumar picked the wrong day to wear whites. The splash of pink and yellow remained on him. “I probably started a bit too early,” he said, outside the BJP office in the morning. Outside, jokes about BJP celebrating L K Advani’s birthday with firecrackers did the rounds.

However, the BJP office on Beer Chand Patel Path refused to bow to the empty-battlefield stereotype throughout. There was stubbornness — of Sushil Kumar Modi, who, at a press conference in the evening, directed the “arrogant” barbs at Lalu Prasad; anger — of Saurabh Jha, a BJYM activist who felt the party had lost the upper caste vote; and stoicism — of the party workers who sat in an air-conditioned office watching television news all day, taking notes.

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At various points during the day, journalists and RPF personnel threatened to outnumber party workers at the BJP office, but a group of youths saved the day. They were particularly vitriolic, even policemen accompanying various leaders did not engage them in conversation.

“We should have been asked to help out more. Instead they brought in people from outside,” said one, mentioning the name of Dinara candidate Rajendra Singh.

The meeting ended with a resolution to “fight for our community”. Jha, who was part of the group, later talked of how they were all upper caste youths and had decided to take part in an anti-reservation agitation later this month.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi was right. Diwali indeed came to Bihar early, but in the rival camp. Firecrackers were set off, and red powder thrown up in the air kept coating phone screens.

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Virendra Kumar was trying out new scarves outside a shop selling election campaign material. The tilak on his forehead was green, a colour that may become more popular in the days to come, but the scarf had lantern prints. “I was not prepared for Laluji’s win. It doesn’t matter that I have to spend money from my own pocket,” said Kumar.

First published on: 09-11-2015 at 01:06:05 am
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