Whenever the politics of Bihar will be discussed, every discussion will be considered incomplete without taking a name and that name is that of Lalu Prasad Yadav, the former Chief Minister of the state. Lalu is the leader of Bihar who is as popular at the national level as he is in Bihar due to his speech. Whether the side or the opposition, when the leader of every party spoke to Lalu Prasad Yadav from inside the house to outside, he would listen carefully and laugh at his funny things.
In the year 1948, on this day i.e. June 11, Lalu Prasad Yadav, born in Phulwaria, Bihar, arrived in Patna in 1954. Finished schooling in 1965 and enrolled in Patna Vishwavidyalaya in 1966. It was from here that his interest in student politics arose and he entered the political field. What was it then, from 1967 to 69, Patna University was elected General Secretary of the Students’ Union. Passed BA in 1970, although he lost the election of the student union president. After this, started a job as a clerk in Patna Veterinary College.
Although the fate of Lalu Prasad Yadav was fixed in politics like this. Married to Rabri Devi in the year 1973. After marriage, he re-enrolled in Patna University to study law. This time the gap which was left last time was also fulfilled. Lalu Prasad Yadav was elected the president of the students’ union of Patna University.
His path got fixed on the political path ahead. In 1974 Sampoorna Bihar became the head of the student movement. Led the student movement under the supervision of Jayaprakash Narayan. The very next year i.e. 1975, during the Emergency, he was arrested under MISA and went to jail.
For the first time in the year 1977, contested the Lok Sabha elections from Chapra on Janata Party ticket and won. After this, he was elected MLA from Sonpur in 1980. Then in 1985 he won again from this assembly seat.
Now the year was 1989 and Lalu Prasad Yadav got another big responsibility. He became the Leader of the Opposition in the Bihar Legislative Assembly replacing Karpoori Thakur. In the same year, he was elected MP from Chapra and in 1990, Lalu Prasad Yadav sat on the chair of the Chief Minister of Bihar for the first time.
His magic also worked in the Bihar Legislative Assembly of 1995 and the party won the election, Lalu again became the Chief Minister. In the year 1996, he became the President of Janata Dal. After this, the next year i.e. in the year 1997, the Janata Dal broke up and got divided and Lalu Prasad Yadav formed the Rashtriya Janata Dal. From here, the road ahead became a bit difficult for Lalu Prasad Yadav. The charge sheet was filed in the fodder scam case and Lalu Prasad Yadav was under pressure to quit, but by now Lalu had become a seasoned player of the political pitch. He played a big bet and made wife Ravdi Devi the chief minister.
In the year 2000, MLAs were elected from Raghopur and Danapur. But the party did not get majority in the assembly. However, with the support of the Congress, Rabri managed to retain Devi in the chief minister’s chair.
Here in the case of disproportionate assets, the third charge sheet was filed against him. However, all this did not stop Lalu Prasad Yadav’s political journey and in 2004, when Manmohan Singh’s government was formed, Lalu Prasad Yadav was given a big responsibility as the Railway Minister. However, in 2005, under the leadership of Nitish Kumar, the NDA formed the government by winning the Bihar assembly elections and after 15 years the ‘right’ of the Lalu family ended.
After this, in the year 2009, the ministerial post of Lalu Prasad Yadav also went away in the Manmohan Singh government. He got entangled badly in the fodder scam case and was convicted in the year 2013. There was a ban on contesting elections. In the year 2015, Lalu-Nitish united in the name of fighting communal forces. In fact, the Rashtriya Janata Dal got the maximum 81 seats in the 2015 assembly elections. Nitish was made the head of the Janata Parivar. But in the year 2017, Nitish Kumar left Lalu’s side and formed the government again with the NDA.
After this Lalu Prasad Yadav was imprisoned in the fodder scam case and in his absence his son Tejashwi Yadav made all efforts, but despite that the power of Bihar was not achieved. During this, Tejashwi continued to take ‘political knowledge’ from his father in jail and as a result of this, RJD emerged as the largest party in the 2020 assembly elections. This not only increased Tejashwi’s stature, but also strengthened Lalu. At present, Lalu is out of jail with his family and after his release, the politics of Bihar is once again hot. There is a political stir. Now it has to be seen whether Lalu plays any of his bets again in the coming days.
When Rabri Devi started calling Lalu Prasad Yadav as ‘Sahab’
As interesting as Lalu’s political journey is, so is the story of his and Ravdi Devi’s marriage and its aftermath. Rabri Devi was born in 1959 in Gopalganj. She was only 14 years old when she got married to Lalu Prasad Yadav. Whereas Lalu Prasad Yadav’s age was 25 years at that time. Gauna happened after three years of marriage. It is said that Lalu Prasad Yadav gives roses to Rabri Devi on every happy occasion, whether it is her birthday or marriage anniversary or Chhath Puja.
After marriage, Rawadi Devi used to call Lalu Yadav by saying ‘Eh’. Eh is often used by Bihari wives for their husbands. an interesting anecdote Sankarshan Thakur book of ‘Brother Bihari given in.
The author wrote, When they got married in the year 1973, Rabri Devi had neither the understanding nor the reason to call her husband ‘saheb’. She was a 14-year-old rural girl, who probably did not know the weight of words and Lalu Yadav was not even a ‘saheb’ at that time. He was a low-ranking employee of Patna Veterinary College. Who used to transfer tea to everyone’s table and file from one officer to another. So ‘eh’ was enough.”
Further Sankarshan Thakur has written, Sometime in mid-1995, after 22 years of marriage and the birth of nine children, Rabri Devi decided to change the way she addressed Lalu Yadav. She started calling him ‘saheb’.
Sankarshan Thakur wrote, ”Lalu was the first chief minister to retain power again in 1995 after being in office for a full term. Now calling him ‘eeh’ was not going to work. He deserved a better title in his house. That’s why Lalu Yadav became ‘saheb’ for Rabri Devi. Further the world was also going to know him by this name, sir.
(Information is taken from Sankarshan Thakur’s book ‘Bandhu Bihari’.)