End of dynastic politics in Bihar? Not really

NDA supporters pour milk over a photo of Prime Minister Narendra Modi after their victory at Lok Sabha polls, in Patna, Friday, May 24, 2019. (PTI Photo)

BJP president Amit Shah, while speaking at the NDA Parliamentary Party meeting, may have asserted that “the 2019 mandate has rid the nation of dynastic politics,” but in Bihar, it’s not so.

The NDA won 39 seats out of 40 Lok Sabha constituencies in Bihar. But in more than 25 per cent of the seats, the NDA winners are either dynasts or belong to political families where other members have been MPs and MLAs.

Out of 11 such NDA MPs, the parliamentarian who tops the chart is Chirag Paswan, son of LJP president Ram Vilas Paswan. Chirag, who made an unsuccessful debut in Bollywood several years ago, won from naxal-infested Jamui for the second consecutive term. Ram Vilas Paswan’s two brothers - Pashupati Kumar Paras and Ram Chandra Paswan – too won from Hajipur and Samastipur Lok Sabha seats respectively.

Another LJP MP Veena Devi, who trounced veteran RJD leader and former Union Minister Raghuvansh Prasad Singh in Vaishali, is wife of JD (U) MLC Dinesh Singh.

Yet another LJP MP from Nawada, Chandan Kumar is the younger brother of former MP Surajbhan Singh, the don who could not contest poll due to his conviction in several criminal cases.

But then, it’s not only the LJP where the blood is thicker than sweat. Kavita Singh, who became JD (U) MP from Siwan after defeating jailed RJD strongman Md Shahabuddin’s wife Heena Sahab, is the daughter-in-law of former JD (U) MLA Jagmato Devi.

Besides, the five LJP MPs and one JD (U) MP, there are five similar BJP Lok Sabha members from Bihar who are either son of ex-parliamentarians or legislators.

Take for example the case of Ravi Shankar Prasad, who gave Shatrughan Sinha a crushing defeat in Patna Sahib. Ravi Shankar’s father Thakur Prasad was a veteran RSS leader and had earlier served as Bihar’s Finance Minister in the erstwhile Karpoori Thakur ministry in the 70s. The other four BJP MPs, whose father were also parliamentarians, include Sushil Singh (Aurangabad), Sanjay Jaiswal (West Champaran), Ashok Yadav (Madhubani) and Ajay Nishad (Muzaffarpur). Their respective fathers - Ram Naresh Singh, Madan Jaiswal, Hukumdeo Narayan Yadav and Capt Jai Narayan Nishad were also MP from the seats now wrested by their sons.

The situation is diametrically opposite on the other side of the fence as all the ‘dynasts’ in Mahagatbandhan, including Misa Bharti (daughter of Lalu Prasad), Pappu Singh (son of ex-MP Madhuri Singh) and Meira Kumar (daughter of ex-Dy PM Jagjiwan Ram) lost the poll.

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