LJP crisis: Chirag Paswan expels five rebel MPs; Paras-led camp removes him as party chief

The latest development came a day after five of the party MPs rebelled against the sixth —late Ram Vilas Paswan’s son Chirag Paswan.

Leaving the split wide open in the Lok Janshakti Party (LJP), five MPs led by Pasupati Paras on Tuesday claimed that they have removed party national president Chirag Paswan from the post. However, Paswan said that LJP called a national executive meet and removed the five rebel MPs from the party’s primary membership.

The latest development came a day after five of the party MPs rebelled against late Ram Vilas Paswan’s son Chirag. The five MPs — Pashupati Kumar Paras (Hajipur), Choudhary Mehboob Ali Qaisar (Khagaria), Chandan Kumar (Nawada), Veena Devi (Vaishali) and Prince Raj (Samastipur) —met Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla on Sunday evening and again on Monday, saying that they have elected Paras as LJP parliamentary party leader and Kaiser as deputy leader. Late Monday night, the Lok Sabha Secretariat issued a circular confirming Paras as leader of the LJP in the Lok Sabha.

In his first reaction after his uncle Pashupati Paras ousted him, Paswan likened the organization to a mother who should not be “betrayed”. In a tweet, he said he made efforts to keep the party founded by his father Ram Vilas Paswan and his family together but failed.

People are supreme in a democracy, Paswan said and thanked those who have kept faith in the party.

Paswan also shared a letter he had written to Paras, the youngest brother of his father, in March in which he had highlighted his uncle’s unhappiness over a number of issues, including his elevation as the party president.

The series of dramatic events come months after the Bihar Assembly elections in October-November last year, in the run-up to which Chirag Paswan had attacked the JD(U) and Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, and stepped out of the NDA, all along maintaining that he wanted to work with the BJP. The LJP had, however, fared poorly in the elections, with its lone MLA eventually crossing over to the JD(U).

On Monday, the rebel MPs, while making it clear that the five MPs want to rejoin the NDA, placed their confidence in “vikas purush” Nitish Kumar.

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