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Lalu Thanks People of Bihar For Birthday Wishes, Asks Migrant Workers Not to Worry

Lalu Prasad Yadav. (Image: Reuters)

Lalu Prasad Yadav. (Image: Reuters)

Prasad, who is serving prison sentences in fodder scam cases and is admitted to Rajendra Institute of Medical Sciences, Ranchi, because of his health issues, said he would continue to fight for the rights of the downtrodden and the oppressed.

Jailed RJD supremo Lalu Prasad on Friday thanked party workers for honouring the poor and feeding over 5 lakh people on his birthday, and asked migrant workers who have returned to Bihar to not worry as he was with them.

Prasad, who is serving prison sentences in fodder scam cases and is admitted to Rajendra Institute of Medical Sciences, Ranchi, because of his health issues, said he would continue to fight for the rights of the downtrodden and the oppressed.

"I pray for your (people's) happiness. I will be indebted for the blessings and love showered on my birthday," Prasad said on his Twitter handle -- operated by his close aides -- and attached a two-page note of gratitude addressed to the residents of Bihar.

Insisting that every greeting he receives gives him the strength to carry on his struggle against injustice, the former Bihar chief minister said his health might not permit him to take active measures, but his vigour to work for people has not waned.

"There has been no slump, not even an iota, in my courage and vigour to fight injustice. I have the same energy which I carried to Patna while leaving my native village Phulwaria (in Gopalganj district)," he said.

The RJD observed Prasad's 73rd birthday on June 11 as "Garib Samman Diwas" to bring focus back on the difficulties faced by migrants during the COVID-19 pandemic.

RJD workers organised "bhoj" (feast) for the poor in some areas.RJD workers in Jharkhand wound up "Lalu Langer" on his birthday after feeding the poor for 71 days during the lockdown, the party's Jharkhand unit General Secretary Ashutosh Ranjan said in Ranchi.

Prasad' birthday also saw posters on "Lalu Pariwar ka Sampattinama" (list of properties owned by Lalu family) coming up in Patna.

The posters say in Hindi: "On 73rd birthday, 73 properties series", which Prasad's family allegedly acquired using his political clout.

The rival JD(U) claimed they have nothing to do with the posters.

JD(U) spokesperson Rajiv Ranjan Prasad, however, said they might have been issued by people "who have been victims of the Lalu-Rabri regime of 15 years in Bihar".

The RJD president in his thanksgiving message hit out at the JD(U)-BJP ruling coalition for the distress faced by the migrant workers who had to return home in Bihar.

Blaming the JD(U)-led government for the pain suffered by lakhs of labourers, Prasad said, "When I heard about the miseries and pains of migrants, I wanted to give a pat on their shoulders and tell them 'kahe fikra karta hai, hum hai naa sath me' (why do you worry, I am with you).

"Compelled by circumstances, however, I am in jail because of a conspiracy. I pity those who are free but helpless, despite being in power. How is that they (those in power) sleep and eat normally (amid such crisis)."

The RJD chief also praised his younger son leader of opposition in Bihar Assembly Tejashwi Prasad Yadav.

Yadav had visited Ranchi to extend birthday greetings to his ailing father.

Prasad said whenever the ruling dispensation let people down, Yadav and the party provided him a sense of relief that his "RJD family" was taking care of those in distress.

"I told Tejashwi that I am proud of him because of the work he did at this tender age (kachi umra). You don't need to stop, not even for a short while. You have to work with double energy, including that of Lalu's, and serve people," he added.