Four-term Katihar MLA Tarkishore Prasad was on Monday, 16 November, sworn in as one of the deputy chief ministers of Bihar along with Renu Devi, replacing BJP’s Sushil Modi.
On Sunday, Prasad was unanimously elected as the leader of the Bharatiya Janta Party (BJP) legislature party in Bihar.
He defeated Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) candidate Dr Ram Prakash Mahto by a margin of over 10,500 votes.
The National Democratic Alliance (NDA) clinched a victory in the Bihar elections by defeating the RJD-led Mahagathbandhan. The BJP alone won 74 seats and the Janata Dal (United) managed to grab just 43 seats. The RJD, which emerged as the single-largest party, alleged that the Nitish Kumar-led government in the state was intimidating officials and tampering with the results.
So, Who is Tarkishore Prasad?
Tarkishore Prasad comes from a Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) background and held several posts in the Sangh before joining the BJP.
He won in the Katihar constituency by contesting on a BJP ticket in October 2005 and has never lost a poll from there ever since.
Prasad showed agriculture as his profession when he submitted his affidavit during the Bihar elections. It is said that he belongs to the Kalwar caste in OBC category, and will represent the political aspirations of Mithila, Kosi, and the Seemachal regions.
The politician, now 64, completed his Class 12 from a local college in Katihar in 1974.
Prasad’s Political Journey
Prasad rose from ranks of the Akhil Bhartiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP).
In 2015, when the JD(U), RJD and Congress fought the Assembly elections together, Prasad retained his seat from Katihar, despite the strong pairing of Lalu Prasad Yadav and Nitish Kumar. However, compared to Sushil Modi, Prasad is considered to be a political lightweight.
Proximity to West Bengal
Prasad’s rise to ranks in the BJP can also be attributed to his Kaithar seat, which shares a border with West Bengal. Political expert Naresh Kumar Srivastava told Hindustan Times that the BJP wants to enter West Bengal and hence Tarkishore Prasad was elevated to the post of the leader of BJP’s legislative party in Bihar.
“I have been given this responsibility and I will carry out the duty to the best of my ability,” Prasad said, reported Hindustan Times.
According to the affidavit given to the Election Commission, Prasad’s had declared assets worth Rs 1.9 crore.