RJD national vice-president Shivanand Tiwary's announcement that he was taking a holiday from active politics on Wednesday drew snide remarks from Bihar Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Kumar Modi recalling the leader's declaration of retirement a few years back.
Modi, a senior BJP leader, came out with a tweet without naming Tiwary, saying, "Those who spend time in the evil company and indulge in sophistry are bound to suffer from mental fatigue".
Tiwary had on Wednesday announced on the social media that he felt mentally tired and was going on a sabbatical, stopping short of renouncing the RJD's primary membership or stepping down as the national vice-president.
The development has been seen as a reflection of the RJD's declining fortunes under the leadership of Tejashwi Yadav who was unable to keep the party's hold intact on the formidable constituency built by his father Lalu Prasad besides taking along the latter's trusted aides.
"He returned to active politics, breaking his vow of sanyas on account of putra-moh (concern for his son) and ended up defending the convicted Lalu Prasad for all his misdeeds, including getting land transferred in his name in return for appointments of MLAs and ministers," Modi alleged in the micro-blogging site.
In the 1990s, Tiwary was one of the petitioners along with Modi who had moved the Patna High Court seeking a CBI probe against Prasad then the chief minister of Bihar in the fodder scam.
Tiwary had announced his retirement from active politics in 2014 while he was a Rajya Sabha member JD(U). He made the announcement after being commanded by Kumar to take the plunge at the hustings from Buxar Lok Sabha seat.
Tiwary, who was a minister in the state cabinet headed by Prasad's wife Rabri Devi, had revived his friendship with the RJD supremo and succeeded in securing a ticket for his son Rahul who represents Shahpur assembly segment.
He was also appointed as RJD national vice president in August, 2017.
After the RJD drew a blank in the Lok Sabha polls this year, Tiwary and some other old-timers in the party had voiced the suggestion that Kumar should be wooed back to the anti-NDA front.
The proposal was, however, summarily rejected by Tejashwi Yadav whom Prasad has anointed as his heir apparent.