PATNA: Aroused by the raging controversy over amended Citizenship Act and National Register for Citizens, ailing and incarcerated RJD chief Lalu Prasad on Friday declared that he was "capable of taking on enemies, despite having suffered a thousand wounds".
Better known for his earthy sense of humour, Prasad who is at Ranchi serving sentences in fodder scam cases, expressed the sentiment with a political flourish posting an Urdu couplet on his official twitter handle understandably operated by his close aides.
"Abhi aankhon ki shamaen jal raheen hain, usool zinda hai, aap log maayus mat hona bimar abhi zinda hai. Hazaron zakhm khakar bhi main dushman ke muqabil hoon,Khuda ka shukr ab tak dil e khuddar zinda hai", read the tweet by Prasad.
Roughly translated the verse said "the flames of my eyes are still burning bright and my principles are still alive, you people must not feel dejected as the sick man is still alive. I am still capable of taking on enemies despite having suffered a thousand wounds, thank God, my self-respect is intact".
The tweet also carried an old video footage of Prasad at a public meeting where he had come down heavily on the Narendra Modi government at the Centre for its failure to fulfil the promise of bringing back black money and pursuing "communal agenda of the RSS".
Notably, Prasad has owed much of his political formidability to his unmatched popularity among the states Muslims, attributed mainly to the gumption he had shown in halting L K Adavnis Ram Rath Yatra by getting him arrested and ensuring that no major communal riots took place in the state during the 15 years of the RJD rule.
Prasad and subsequently his wife Rabri Devi ruled Bihar during this period.
Now a pale shadow of its former self with not a single member in the Lok Sabha, the RJD has sensed an opportunity to win back the Muslims a section of whom had earlier gravitated towards Chief Minister Nitish Kumar in the wake of the JD(U) voting in favor of the CAB in Parliament.
The party has also been seeking to defend itself against the numerous corruption allegations that surround Prasad and his family insisting that these were "fabricated because of stout refusal to strike a compromise" with the hegemonic BJP.
In the wake of Prasads latest outbursts, the JD(U) mortified by allegations of capitulating before the BJP took the bait and quoted an old speech by the RJD supremo in which he had attacked the Congress for having engineered the 1989 Bhagalpur riots "to defame the BJP and the RSS".
"Eager to distribute certificates of secularism, @laluprasadRJD seems to suffer from amnesia. He should recall his speech on the floor of the Lok Sabha on December 29, 1989 wherein he had targeted the Congress for the Bhagalpur riots and alleged that the conflagration was engineered to defame the BJP and the RSS", JD(U) spokesman Neeraj Kumar tweeted.
Kumar, a minister in Bihar, also shared a screenshot of the text of the speech, with the relevant portion highlighted.
Prasad was an MP from Chhapra in 1989 when his Janata Dal headed by V P Singh was in power at the Centre with the BJP extending support from outside.
He became the Chief Minister of Bihar in April, 1990 and Advanis arrest six months later had caused the government at New Delhi to fall as the BJP withdrew support in protest.