Paswan’s daughter says ready to contest against Dad

Paswan’s daughter says ready to contest against Dad

Union minister and Lok Janshakti Party chief Ram Vilas Paswan and his son Chirag during press conference at the party office in Patna. PTI File Photo

The sibling rivalry in Union Minister Ram Vilas Paswan’s family is out in the open. Paswan’s younger daughter Asha has charged her father with nepotism and alleged that he was only promoting his son Chirag, who is the MP from Bihar’s Jamui parliamentary constituency and chairman of the LJP Parliamentary Party (LJPPP).

Asha, daughter of Paswan’s first wife Raj Kumari Devi, said if given a chance, she also would like to contest against her father Ram Vilas Paswan from Hajipur with RJD symbol. Her husband Anil Kumar Sadhu, who is the son of five-term MLA from Fatuha, Puneet Rai, had switched over to the RJD from LJP in March 2018. “If the RJD gives me the ticket, I would like to contest from Hajipur,” said Asha, who stays in the state capital while her mother who leads an obscure life at Khagaria.

Chirag, on the other hand, is the son of Paswan’s second wife Reena Paswan, a Punjabi, whom Ram Vilas married in 1983.

Paswan has two daughters from his first wife. The elder daughter is married to Mrinal, a budding politician, who unsuccessfully contested the 2015 Bihar Assembly elections. Mrinal, like Anil Kumar Sadhu, is also very close to Lalu Prasad and had earlier played an important role in the rapprochement between the two regional satraps (Paswan and Lalu) ahead of the 2004 parliamentary polls.

Sadhu, who has a running feud with his father-in-law, for the last two years, said if his wife was denied a Lok Sabha ticket, he could be a possible candidate against Ram Vilas Paswan from Hajipur as an RJD nominee.

Hajipur has been Paswan's stronghold from where the Union Minister has been winning since 1977 (he created a record of sorts during the anti-Indira wave), barring 1984, 1996 and 2009 LS polls.

In the 2014 parliamentary elections, the LJP contested seven seats in Bihar in alliance with the BJP and won six of them. Three seats were won by his family members which included Hajipur, Jamui (Chirag Paswan, son) and Samastipur (Ram Chandra Paswan, brother). Paswan’s another younger brother Pashupati Kumar Paras is Animal Husbandry Minister in Nitish Kumar's Cabinet.