First split in RJD since 1997: Jharkhand unit leaders float new party, claim support of 90% cadre



The Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) of Lalu Prasad Yadav is going through perhaps the worst phase since its inception in 1997. The party first drew a blank in the Lok Sabha elections and then its leader Tejashwi Yadav has been away on sabbatical, creating a vacuum in the party. The party was faced with another jolt on Sunday when its Jharkhand unit leadership announced departure from the party and floated a new political party Rashtriya Janata Dal Loktantrik. According to a report in news agency ANI, RJDs Jharkhand unit chief Gautam Sagar Rana along with other party members on Sunday formed Rashtriya Janata Dal Loktantrik – RJD(L). Rana has been named the president of RJD(L). He claimed that RJD workers were upset with Lalu and he has the support of nearly 90% of the RJD workers in the state. 90% of RJD Jharkhand cadre and I are upset with Lalu Prasad Yadav. There is no democracy left in RJD. We will serve people of Jharkhand on our own, Rana said. The decision to float a new political party with the support of the RJD workers was taken at parivartan sabha, held at the assembly auditorium in Ranchi. The gathering was followed by en masse resignations of RJD leaders and workers. The RJDs breakaway faction said that it will approach the Election Commission to obtain a separate symbol and it will contest the Jharkhand assembly polls due in December alone. Notably, this was the first split in RJD after Lalu formed the party in 1997 and comes just before the RJD celebrates its 24th foundation day on July 5. Internal differences within the party came to fore ever since RJD nominated party Soon after the announcement was made, the party looked divided with many calling the decision unfortunate. The controversial decision came with six months of the RJD disciplinary committees recommendation for suspension of Singh from primary membership of party for six years. The suspension recommendation was sent to the partys leadership after Singh pulled the down Rana

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