Hours after senior RJD leader Raghuvansh Prasad Singh died battling post-Covid complications at the AIIMS, Delhi, dirty politics has begun over his death and the letters believed to have been written by him just before his death.
Singh who remained associated with Lalu Prasad ~ who heads the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) ~ for over three decades not only resigned from the party but also sent many letters to chief minister Nitish Kumar from the ICU of the AIIMS just before his death, casting doubts over the authenticity of these letters.
Among other things, the veteran socialist leader had sought extension of MGNREGA benefits to the farm sector, bringing the bowl believed to have been used by Buddha from Kabul museum to Bihar and unfurling Tricolour in Vaishali, world’s first republic, on 26 January by the Governor. The RJD now wonders over these letters purportedly written by Singh.
“How can a person admitted to the ICU and battling his life facing serious post-Corona complications write so many letters at quick intervals? This smack of serious conspiracy,” said RJD legislator Subodh Yadav. According to him, during his meeting with Singh shortly before his death, the dead RJD leader had announced never to quit the party.
RJD spokesperson Bhai Birendra, too, questioned the timing of the letters. According to him, all these letters were claimed to have been written on 10 September while he was admitted to the ICU after developing serious health complications and complaining of breathlessness. The very next day on Friday (11 September), he was put on ventilator support and he died less than 48 hours later. “No person admitted to the ICU can write,” Birendra said.
Speculations are rife that the former Union minister was made to change his mind under pressure from his elder son who is said to have quit his corporate job to take plunge in politics. Reports said he was in touch with the JDU which promised to nominate him to the Upper House of the Bihar Assembly.
Even as the letter controversy continues, the NDA has blamed the Lalu Prasad family for the death of Singh. Hindustani Awam Morcha (HAM) chief Jitan Ram Manjhi alleged Singh died due to “tortures” meted out by the RJD chief family. “He may have met a sudden end but I believe Lalu family ‘killed’ him by meting out tortures,” alleged Manjhi who returned to the NDA only last month.
According to him, Lalu’s elder son had likened Singh to “a mug of water which can’t bring down the water level of an ocean”. “The comment shocked him so much so that he eventually died,” Manjhi alleged.
The BJP, too, made similar allegations.