Veteran politician and founder of Lok Jan Shakti Party’s Ram Vilas Paswan took his last breathe last week. A politician who was nicknamed as “Meteorological Scientist” in the political circle because of his farsightedness of sensing the political wave in the country. A leader who managed to build his name as the mass leader of a marginalized section of society from a state like Bihar to the National level politics. Late Ram Vilas Paswan has had the opportunity to serve under the six prime ministers of the nation, just because of his correct political predictability about who is going to be in the power. The veteran political however handed over the command of his political party to his son and one of the few young names of Indian politics Chirag Paswan on 5th November 2019 owing to his bad health. With the demise of the Ljp party founder and his father Ram Vilas Paswan, the one movie actor of Bollywood has a quite difficult path to prove himself amidst the Bihar elections standing on doors.
Chirag Paswan a second-generation politician who first went on to make his career in Bollywood, but had to return to his family business to help his father. Chirag a two-time Mp from the Jamui constituency in Bihar and the head of the Ljp faces multiple challenges in the political battlefield of Bihar to establish himself in the political sphere. The first and the biggest challenge the most sudden one that stands in front of Junior Paswan is that the presence of his father would be missed in these elections. With the demise of Ram Vilas Paswan who has mentored his party in all the elections that the party has fought till now, the very obvious reason for him missing has chances to affect the road ahead for Ljp in the state. However, political pundits are also predicting that this sudden demise of Ram Vilas Paswan may lead to a sentimental voting by the voters to the young brigade of Ljp.
The second and the major challenge that Ljp under Chirag Paswan faces is about the decision that he has made to break the NDA alliance at the state level for Bihar elections. Ljp deciding to contest on all 122 seats against JDU in the Bihar assembly elections, with the claim that they are challenging the Nitish Kumar to lead JDU’S leadership is widely seen as an attempt to make Bjp the largest party in the state. The opposition parties are calming that LJP is acting as a Bjp B team whose intent is to dismantle JDU. However Chirag with the Campaign “Bihar 1st Bihari 1st” is calming to advocate for Bihar’s development. The tough challenge for him will be to fight his own housemates and make his campaign reach every nook and corner for him to get at least a minimum number of seats through which he can play the role of King Maker or even King if people mandates favor him.
Chirag Paswan has been vocal against Nitish Kumar since the mishandling of the Nitish Government in the Corona situation where in a number of laborers had to walk in from around the country to reach their hometown in Bihar. The sadness and dull attitude of the state government in welcoming their domicile’s giving a perfect opportunity to rebel against Nitish Kumar. Therefore the third challenge he faces in the election battlefield is to turn all the anti-Nitish votes to his side against the strong-looking RJD -Congress alliance. Chirag has this difficult task to retain his 15% vote share along with capturing the anti-Nitish votes to his side and make this fraction his voter base.
The Battle of Bihar is seen as a battle wherein the political successors have the challenge to establish themselves. The RJD lead congress coalition having made Tejashwi Yadav the face of CM presents the strongest competition to Chirag Paswan. Both the leaders however share this similarity of their father not being able to help them in these elections. Both these young politicians of the political ring of Bihar have a lot more on stake. The challenges range from making their party triumph in the elections to establishing themselves and proving why have they been handed over the party command and to make their name as their father had during their times is a challenge that is shared by both Chirag and Tejashwi.
The decision of Ljp to contest against NDA on the seats allocated to JDU can also be analyzed in a view that maybe Chirag is aiming for state assembly elections of 2025. This far viewpoint of Chirag levis upon him the fifth challenge by default which is to show his future perspective. The very basic fact that Bjp is not introducing new faces. Nitish lead JD(U)doesn’t have young leaders. The RJD is lead by Tejashwi who faces grumblings within his own party. So the possibility of Chirag filling out this vacuum cannot be undermined. But for this, it squares down to his fifth challenge of proving his far vision my winning at least 30+ seats in these assembly elections which will surely not be a cakewalk for him.
The meaning of the name Chirag suggests a lamp that has the power to light up the darkness it sees ahead. 10th November 2020 would be the date when Bihar along with the whole nation will come to know whether this Chirag has been able to light up the darkness on its own or it requires the ever wanting support of oil to glow.