‘Conspiracy hatched behind my back when I was ill’: Chirag Paswan targets JD(U) for LJP split

Chirag Paswan also rejected the decisions taken by the faction headed by his uncle Pashupati Kumar Paras, saying the party’s constitution does not authorise them any such power.

As the crisis in the Lok Janshakti Party keeps unfolding, Chirag Paswan on Wednesday blamed Janata Dal (United) for engineering the split in his party but steered clear of questions regarding the role of the BJP in the development. He also rejected the decisions taken by the faction headed by his uncle Pashupati Kumar Paras, saying the party’s constitution does not authorise them any such power.

In his first interaction with media after the split in the party, Paswan alleged that the JD(U) had been working to cause a split in the party even when his father was alive. “A conspiracy was hatched behind my back while I was ill,” Paswan claimed.

Striking a combative note by describing himself as “sher ka beta” (lion’s son), Paswan asserted that he will fight for the cause of the party founded by his father Ram Vilas Paswan. It is going to be a long battle to claim ownership of the LJP, he said.

On Tuesday, five MPs led by Pasupati Paras on Tuesday claimed that they have removed party national president Chirag Paswan from the post. However, Paswan said that LJP called a national executive meet and removed the five rebel MPs from the party’s primary membership.

This came a day after five of the party MPs rebelled against late Ram Vilas Paswan’s son Chirag. The five MPs — Pashupati Kumar Paras (Hajipur), Choudhary Mehboob Ali Qaisar (Khagaria), Chandan Kumar (Nawada), Veena Devi (Vaishali) and Prince Raj (Samastipur) —met Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla on Sunday evening and again on Monday, saying that they have elected Paras as LJP parliamentary party leader and Kaiser as deputy leader. Late Monday night, the Lok Sabha Secretariat issued a circular confirming Paras as leader of the LJP in the Lok Sabha.

The party drama also played out in Patna, where Paswan’s supporters held a protest at the LJP office and blackened posters of the five ‘rebel’ MPs.

Paswan has contested Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla’s decision to name Paras as the leader of the party in the House, saying it is “contrary” to provisions of his organisation.

In a letter written on Tuesday, Paswan also informed Birla of the party’s decision to expel five MPs, who have joined hands against him, and urged the Speaker to review the earlier decision and issue a new circular naming him as the LJP leader in the Lok Sabha.

“Since Article 26 of the Constitution of Lok Jan Shakti Party empower Central Parliamentary Board of the party to decide who would be Leader of our Party in Lok Sabha, hence, the decision of announcing Sh. Pashupati Kumar Paras MP as Leader of LJP party in the Lok Sabha is contrary to provision of Constitution of our party,” he wrote in the letter.

(With PTI inputs)

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