“A man that is young in years may be old in hours, if he have lost no time”, says Francis Bacon.

Certainly, Tejaswi Yadav has lost no time in entering politics when he got elected as an MLA from Raghopur in 2015 when he was 26. This man is young, sharp and agile. We see a lot of promises in this promising leader. As against the old horses like Nitish Kumar who is nearing 70, Sushil Kumar Modi, a year younger to Nitish Kumar, and many like them who have almost lost their intellectual vitality, leave alone physical prowess, but are still clung to power.

We have a Prime Minister who is 70, a defence minister who is 69, and then we talk of Young India and Digital India – both are symbolic to be associated with the younger generation. Will it not be balancing if young people are ruled by young leader? Isn’t it the aspirational gap between the rulers and the ruled?

Years make people either saint or a satan; Tejaswi carries fresh thoughts with his years at hand. Being a son of Lalu Prasad Yadav may be an advantage or disadvantage, as which way you may think, but the way Tejaswi handled RJD post-2017 events when Nitish Kumar switched his loyalty to the BJP has been exemplary.

It was the same Nitish Kumar who, in October 2015, slammed the Prime Minister Narendra Modi for his remark ‘rozana jungal raj ka dar’ and in October 2020, he listened to ‘jungal raj’ again from the same Prime Minister, but said nothing. No Lalu Prasad around. Not Rabri either. But this Tejaswi is always on the road, struggling to fight for the people, speaks positive things about people, about the development of Bihar, and about saving the state from religious fanaticism, political jingoism and the advertisement government.

The first show of vision of Tejaswi is the RJD manifesto, especially the cover page, which shows the composite India, secular India, and socialist India. Look at the names and photographs of Mahatma Gandhi, BR Ambedkar, Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, Ram Manohar Lohia, Karpoori Thakur, and Loknayak Jayprakash Narayan.

Interestingly, the cover page does not carry the photo of RJD’s founder Lalu Prasad Yadav. Is there anything wrong in a promise of 10 lakh jobs if we have already lived with the promise of 2 crores jobs?

So much of corruption you hear from the BJP leaders as if they are living in simple huts and hospices, and that people are so ignorant that they don’t understand how CBI and ED are being made to work and why and you feel all corrupt leaders are in opposition parties and the BJP leaders are all saints directly descended from heaven.

All these image building is state-sponsored media handiwork and the government of the advertisement, which means talks, displays and statements followed by threats, arrests and NSA.

Tejaswi very well knows that the BJP leaders are hell-bent in finishing the opposition, taking advantage of official positions; he knows the growing economic disparity, the rising unemployment and social conflicts – all are pressing issues the BJP leaders do not like talk about but euphoria of false claims, spread of hatred, and exploitation of religious sentiments.

We have so much of discords, conflicts and violence in these years. The ruling government at the centre helped conflict grow, assisted in dividing people and sending innocents into prison. The biggest failure of the BJP government is social divide where Dalits have no value and Muslims are pushed aside of political stream. It is time to give Tejaswi a chance.

M Shamsur Rabb Khan, Freelance writer, New Delhi