Tejashwi Yadav: Watch Out for this Leader-in-the-making
From Day One, the daddy's obedient son knew how to give a personalized touch to the politics popularized by his father.
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Born on November 9, 1989, to Rabri Devi and Lalu Prasad — the two former chief ministers of Bihar who ruled the state for one-and-a-half decades — Tejashwi Yadav was a natural inheritor of the political acumen that one needs to make inroads into the corridors of power.
After trying his hands at cricket, Tejashwi took to a different pitch in 2015 and scored a comprehensive win on debut, bagging the Raghopur Assembly seat in Bihar's Vaishali district.
Smooth Entry to Power Corridors
Climbing the ladder at a pace that was even faster than that of his father, he glided down to the Deputy Chief Minister's throne at the age of 26 with support from JDU chief Nitish Kumar after the Mahagathbandhan (consisting of Janata Dal United, Rashtriya Janata Dal and Congress) swept the Bihar elections in 2015.
All this while he has been under the tutelage of his father, who has taken great care in shaping up his children's political careers —his eldest son Tej Pratap Yadav was the state health minister in the JDU-RJD government and daughter Misa Bharti is a Rajya Sabha member.
Adding The Tech Touch
From Day One, the daddy's obedient son knew how to give a personalised touch to the politics popularised by his father. The tech-savvy youth leader began harping on the need for using social media tools to strike a chord with young minds, strengthening his party base that eventually helped RJD win the maximum number of seats in the last Assembly polls.
Mainstream media have always credited him for the party's complete makeover, making it a uniform mix of greenhorns and veterans. He has been clever enough in pushing his innovative ideas through party elders, displaying a true leadership quality. Political experts have claimed that he enjoys complete command over his party but, like a true politician, never leaves room for an error.
Knows When to be A Student
Following in the footsteps of his boss and Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, Tejashwi never forgets to do his homework properly before attending any political meeting. Like an enthusiastic learner, he never hesitates to learn new tricks or seek advice from a shrewd politician that his father is.
Rise of a War Hero
The recent high drama in Bihar that saw Chief Minister Nitish Kumar chuck the Grand Alliance and form an NDA government in the state brought about a turning point in Tejashwi's career or may be personality. From a leader-in-the-making to a commander who can take an overpowering opposition by its horns, Tejashwi's transition was overnight and effortless.
He took the Bihar's political stage by storm on the day Nitish cleared the floor test as the face of the NDA, stealing the thunder from his teacher-turned-bête noir on the latter's most important day.
Great Oratorical Skills
True to his nature, even on this day, Tejashwi had done his homework well in advance. He took on the CM on an array of issues, accusing him of graft and harbouring a lust for power. He also highlighted how Nitish conveniently switched allegiance and formed four governments in four years, joining hands with different parties as per his whims and fancies.
His cheeky and sharp questions caught even some of the BJP elders off guard, most of them scurrying for a defensive cover against a bruiser, who has his facts right.
This new-age politician dexterously pinched the CM where it hurts the most, slamming Nitish for changing sides on flimsy ideological pretexts.
His speech was loud and message too clear to even leave his staunchest critics in the opposition dumbfounded.
The battle has just begun and Tejashwi has just started his journey. What needs to be seen how this leader steers clear of all controversies to bring his party back to power.