Paras declares support for NDA but falls short of calling truce with Chirag

ashupati Kumar Paras
ashupati Kumar Paras

Patna | Former Union minister Pashupati Kumar Paras on Saturday made it clear that he will "continue to support the NDA" in the Lok Sabha polls but fell short of calling a truce with nephew Chirag Paswan.

Paras, who has been avoiding the press ever since he came back to Bihar after giving up his ministerial berth in disgust, made a statement on the social media site X.

Tagging Union Home Minister Amit Shah, BJP president J P Nadda and the party's Bihar in-charge Vinod Tawde, Paras wrote in Hindi, "Our Rashtriya Lok Janshakti Party is a part of NDA and Prime Minister Narendra Modi is our leader."

Paras, whose Hajipur Lok Sabha seat is being contested by Chirag, as the NDA candidate, said Modi’s "decision is supreme for us. Our full support will be there to ensure that the NDA crosses the 400-mark and wins all 40 seats in Bihar".

Paras had quit the Union cabinet after the NDA gave five seats to Chirag's Lok Janshakti Party (Ram Vilas) while leaving him high and dry.

His party came into being after he split, in 2021, Lok Janshakti Party founded by late brother and Chirag's father Ram Vilas Paswan.

Although Paras had then succeeded in getting the support of all LJP MPs, except Chirag, they have now deserted him, trying to curry favour with his nephew or exploring prospects in the BJP.

Speculations had been rife that Paras, who had been hopeful that the BJP would back him for a second consecutive term in Hajipur, might enter the fray as a rebel candidate and get support from the INDIA bloc.

However, on Friday the RJD, the largest opposition party in Bihar, made it clear that it would field its own candidate from the reserved seat which late Paswan had represented several times and his son is contesting to drive home the point that he, and not Paras, was the true heir to his father's legacy.

The BJP has been of the view that the nephew and the uncle should "come together", though Chirag has maintained that the ball was in the court of Paras, who was "the one to cause a split in the family and the party".

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