Patna: Tejashwi Yadav is a force to reckon with. In fact, with his father Lalu Prasad Yadav in hospital and his mother and former Bihar chief minister Rabri Devi not playing an active role in politics anymore, Tejashwi can be credited with keeping the RJD flag flying.

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In an exclusive interview to Zee, Yadav spoke about the state of affairs in Bihar as also politics on the national stage.  He began by pointing out that he was just 29-30 years of age but was shouldering a huge responsibility. Taking a jibe at Ram Vilas Paswan’s son Chiraj, Yadav said he couldn’t become the chairman of the parliamentary board when there were others who succeeded in doing so within a couple of years.

He said he did come into power but at that time, worried over the Srijan scam and the Muzaffarpur shelter home scandal, Nitish Kumar ditched the RJD and allied with the BJP.

Yadav alleged that the BJP was instrumental in keeping Nitish in power and also registering false cases against his family. He said, “The public knows Nitish was desperate to stay in power, even if it meant siding with the BJP.”

Pointing a finger at the current political discourse, Yadav said that elections should be fought over issues plaguing the society. He said, “We aim for eradicating poverty, addressing farmers’ woes and getting Bihar the status of special state. Those holding the seat of power are telling lies to the public.”

Speaking specifically about his state, Yadav said, “The education infrastructure in my state is in a shambles. Work on five medical colleges began under my elder brother (Tej Pratap Yadav) when he was the Health Minister.”

Attacking the Modi Government at the Centre, Yadav said, “Modi’s government has only done the task of inaugurating projects which the UPA Government had begun. All that the PM has done is tell lies to the public and dupe them.”

Calling Nitish his uncle, Yadav said there was a time the CM didn’t want to see the PM’s face and now, he is seeking votes in the PM’s name. “He himself (Nitish) is good-looking, where is he hiding now?”

Recalling senior BJP functionary Ram Madhav’s comment that the BJP might find the going tough in these elections, Yadav said, “Had my father been in active politics, the BJP would have been uprooted completely by now.”

Talking about his father’s book, Yadav insisted that whatever Lalu had written about Nitish was correct.

He said the mahagathbandhan was giving sleepless night to the NDA. “The alliance is doing well. The BJP won’t be able to open its account in UP, Bengal, Bihar and Jharkhand. “The alliance is winning all the seats. After this election, both Nitish Kumar and his party would be wiped out.”

On how Nitish was first with RJD and then changed sides to the BJP, Yadav said, “There was a time when Nitish ji used to call BJP the Badka Jhutha Party and he would tell us things about it, make statements about the BJP and the RSS.

Yadav also reiterated his stance that he saw only Rahul Gandhi as our future PM.

On Ram Vilas Paswan, Yadav said it saddened him to see the former’s party fare so poorly. However, in an upbeat mood, Yadav claimed that post-May 23, the politics of Bihar will experience a shake-up.

Brushing aside reports of a rift with elder brother Tej Pratap, Yadav said, “Not many know the kind of understanding I share with my brother.”

Yadav claimed that it had already become clear that the UPA would form the Government at the Centre and that neither the BJP nor the NDA would return to power.