Day after coup, Chirag Paswan removed as LJP chief
Chirag Paswan was on Tuesday removed as the chief of the Lok Janshakti Party, a party founded by his father Ram Vilas Paswan. Paswan was removed as the LJP chief following an emergency meeting of rebel party MPs, who staged a coup against him under the leadership of his uncle, Pashupati Kumar Paras. Reportedly, he will now be stripped of other positions of power.
The rebel MPs, who include Paras, said Chirag Paswan was removed as LJP chief on the 'One Man, One Post' principle. Paswan was also the leader of the LJP Parliamentary party and Parliamentary Board chairperson. Suraj Bhan has been named the working chief of the party until a new president is elected in a national executive meeting (likely to be held soon).
Sources told NDTV that Paras's ascendance to power will be complete by the end of this week. Paswan will now be removed as the leader of the LJP Parliamentary party and the Parliamentary Board, the sources added.
On Monday, five of the six LJP Lok Sabha MPs (Paswan being the sixth MP) chose Paras as their new leader. The five include Choudhary Mehboob Ali Kaiser (MP from Khagaria), Chandan Kumar (Nawada), Veena Devi (Vaishali), Paras himself (Hajipur), and his nephew Prince Raj (Samastipur). The five said they had elected Paras as the Parliamentary party leader and Kaiser as the deputy leader.
Paras—who is the younger brother of Ram Vilas Paswan—also refused to entertain Paswan's attempts for reconciliation, as the latter stood at his doorstep for an hour and 45 minutes seeking a meeting. Paswan shared a letter on Twitter where he likened the LJP to a "mother" who must never be betrayed. However, he added, "People are above all else in a democracy," sounding resigned.
The decision to oust Paswan can be traced back to the November 2020 Bihar elections. Paswan had decided to break away from the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA). The BJP and Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar's Janata Dal-United (JDU) had announced a pre-poll alliance. Eventually, the LJP won one seat but ended up diminishing the JDU's seat share by at least 32.