In his report card, Lalu Yadav appeared to indict his 29-year-old son, Tej Pratap Yadav's performance as well.
Patna: Lalu Yadav, the chief of the Rashtriya Janata Dal has been seething at Chief Minister Nitish Kumar for terminating the Grand Alliance with Lalu Yadav's party and the Congress and renewing a partnership with the BJP. In media interactions and tweets, the RJD chief has lost no opportunity to call his former ally names and run him down.
Lalu Yadav stuck to this script on Tuesday too. But in claiming that only his younger son, former Deputy Chief Minister Tejashwi Yadav, 27, was the only performer in the Nitish Kumar cabinet, he appeared to indict his 29-year-old son, Tej Pratap Yadav's performance as well.
At one of the many media interactions that the RJD chief has held over the last week, Lalu Yadav on Tuesday was going hammer and tongs at Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar who he accused of betrayal when someone asked him what he made of the government's performance over the last 20 months that Grand Alliance government had been in place.
It was just about average, Lalu Yadav suggested. And then he added: "Only my son Tejashwi performed".
Seen as Lalu Yadav's political heir, Tejashwi was his father first choice for the Deputy Chief Minister post in the winter of 2015 when the three-party alliance stopped an aggressive BJP under PM Narendra Modi from capturing power in the state.
As the state's health and environment minister, Tej Pratap Yadav had to settle for a junior role as compared to his younger brother, the state's Deputy Chief Minister.
For the health minister of a state critically short of doctors and health facilities, one of Tej Pratap Yadav's earliest decisions that put him in the media glare was a government ambulance with the best emergency equipment that was deployed outside his home 24x7. Months later, the minister landed in another controversy for finding enough time to act in a Hindi film, "Apharan Udyog" (kidnapping industry), where he played Bihar's Chief Minister. The move, ironically, was on the kidnappings in Bihar in the 1990s when his father Lalu Yadav and mother Rabri Devi ruled the state.
In his full-time job as minister, Tej Pratap Yadav was often found fumbling for answers in the state assembly. On occasions, other ministers had to stand-in for him because he would skip the assembly and was often singled out by the opposition for what they called was evidence of his non-serious approach.
Over the last few weeks, however, it was Tejashwi Yadav who was the centre of the controversy after the Central Bureau of Investigation named him in a corruption case that eventually led Chief Minister Nitish Kumar to pull down his government. The Chief Minister was sworn in the next day with support from the BJP.
Sushil Kumar Modi, who replaced Tejashwi as Deputy Chief Minister, however, promised to expose what he called were Lalu Yadav's links with the sand mafia. Sushil Modi has also ordered a fresh investigation into a "soil scam" in which Tej Pratap Yadav was allegedly involved as the environment minister. In April this year, Mr Modi alleged that a two-acre piece of land on the outskirts of the state capital Patna was illegally transferred to the Yadavs, who leased it to a real estate developer to build a mall and then sold soil from the plot to the Patna zoo, which was then governed by the Forest Department under Tej Pratap Yadav.