Patna: Bihar`s ruling Janata Dal-United (JD-U) has denied a ticket to Maninder Mandal, the son of BP Mandal, the former Bihar chief minister who penned the Mandal Commission Report that recommended reservations for other backward classes (OBCs) and changed the course of Indian politics.
In the decision that has stirred political circles here ahead of the Bihar assembly elections beginning Oct 21, Maninder Mandal, who represents the Madhepura assembly seat, has been denied a ticket. His name was not in the first list of 54 candidates released by the party for the first and second phase of polls.
The JD-U has replaced Maninder Mandal, who belongs to the powerful backward caste Yadav, with another Yadav, Ramendra Kumar Yadav Ravi.
A JD-U leader close to Maninder Mandal told reporters on condition of anonymity that JD-U president Sharad Yadav and Chief Minister Nitish Kumar were behind the decision.
The Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) has spoken out. "It was unfortunate that the son of the man behind the Mandal report was denied a ticket," said RJD leader Ramkirpal Yadav.
The JD-U was quiet. "I can`t say anything on it as the party leadership must have decided on the basis of ground reality," said JD-U spokesperson Shayam Rajak.
Maninder Mandal was also noncommittal when contacted. "Let`s wait for two three days, I will then decide what to do or not," he said.
"Denying a ticket to Maninder Mandal is nothing but a ploy to humiliate B.P. Mandal`s legacy in politics," said Sanjay Yadav, a supporter of Maninder Mandal said.
He said all Bihar politicians, including Nitish Kumar, former chief minister Lalu Prasad, Sharad Yadav, Ram Vilas Paswan had benefited from Mandal politics but had now forgotten BP Mandal.
Bihar will elect a 243-member assembly in staggered polling that begins Oct 21 and ends Nov 20. The results will be known Nov 24.