Updated April 26th, 2024 at 10:26 IST

Exclusive/ Pappu Yadav's 'Mahabharat' Jibe at Lalu: 'I am Arjun, not Abhimanyu. Didn't Fall in His Trap'

Pappu said that the RJD wanted to end his political career by persuading him to fight from Madhepura or Supaul.

Reported by: Prakash Singh
Pappu Yadav opens up on his prospects as Purnia votes | Image:PTI

Purnia: All eyes are on Purnia as local strongman Pappu Yadav faces the toughest challenge of his political career. He is up against JDU's Santosh Kumar Kushwaha, who had secured a mammoth 54.85% vote-share in 2019 - a significant 14% jump in vote share from 2014. Miffed over RJD supremo Lalu Prasad Yadav denying him Purnia seat, Pappu decided to go solo in a seat where he is also fighting RJD's pick Bima Bharati. Both Bharati and Pappu are banking on their traditional Yadav and Muslim votebanks. However, Pappu feels that he has the blessings of all communities. In an exclusive interview with Republic during Phase 2 voting in Seemanchal's vital constituency, Pappu said that the RJD wanted to end his political career by persuading him to fight from Madhepura or Supaul.

Here are edited excerpts from the interview:


How has your 'Pranam Purnia' campaign been so far?

'Pranam Purnia' means seeking blessings from mothers to daughters. The movement has reached across all households. I have received the blessings of everyone in this constituency. From the blessings of my countrymen to workers across party lines, I have captured everyone's hearts. You can't even imagine. After we merged with Congress, I put forth my thoughts. Following that, a grand Mahabharat saga was written from a house in Patna. A 'Chakravyuh'-like trap was laid for me similar to that of Abhimanyu from Mahabharat. But, I am not Abhimanyu. I am Arjuna.

Who betrayed you - RJD or Congress?


No one betrayed me. I went to meet to with Lalu Prasad Yadav and Tejashwi after merging with Congress. I am bound to meet them as they invited me. After that, they practise politics of hatred. Why do you (RJD) not like people who speak their heart out like Pappu or Kanhaiya? You don't even like Sahabuddin's family...

When you merged with Congress, what was the party's promise and what was Lalu's message?


Lalu ji told me that you won't get Purnia. You either take Madhepura or Supaul. I said that I won't leave Purnia. He asked me to merge with RJD as I was with RJD. I said I can't merge with RJD. I told him with all seriousness that I want to fight from Purnia. Congress merged with Priyanka and Rahul's blessings. No politics is involved here. I was preparing for fighting from here. I sacrificed a 15 year-old-party and 40 years of my fight for what?

Did Priyanka and Rahul also betray you?

Do you really think that is what happened? Did they ever speak publicly against me? Was I thrown out? All Congress workers are here with me.


Did Congress or RJD oppose you?

I don't know about that. I have secured the blessings of all Congress workers.


Do you see yourself being able to challenge Tejashwi Yadav and his party's voter base amid big churning in voters' minds?

I don't belong exclusively to only Yadavs or Muslims. During COVID, I had helped people from all castes.


Tejashwi appealed voters not to vote for you over here. Do you think the Yadav votebank is in tact over here?

I have won thrice from here fighting as an independent. I have won Madhepura by over 3 lakh votes. Lalu Yadav has lost from here twice. I don't know what voters will do.








Published April 26th, 2024 at 10:25 IST