Lalu birthday to be marked with a cleanliness drive

June 10th, 2008 - 7:34 pm ICT by IANS  

Patna, June 10 (IANS) Railway Minister Lalu Prasad’s birthday Wednesday will be celebrated in a unique style by his party members and supporters in Bihar - they plan to carry out a cleanliness drive in the marginalised quarters of society, besides presenting him a cake shaped like a train! “Lalu’s birthday will be celebrated with a difference this year to focus on creating awareness about cleanliness among the socially marginalised sections of society,” said Ram Kirpal Yadav, Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) parliamentarian from Patna.

The campaign apart, a free lunch would also be organised for the poor to mark the RJD chief’s 61st birthday.

Shyam Rajak, an RJD leader close to Lalu, said that the cleanliness drive would send the right message to the people, particularly the poorest of the poor. He added that the campaign would be conducted in a predominantly Dalit locality.

Lalu is expected to cut a cake on this special day with his family at the official residence of his wife Rabri Devi, who is Leader of Opposition in the state assembly.

Last year, Lalu celebrated his birthday in New Delhi, much to the disappointment of his supporters here. To make up this year, RJD leaders and workers said they would present him a large cake shaped like a train.

Lalu, like millions others in India, has at many occasions said that he didn’t know his exact date of birth, but his school certificate records June 11 as his birth date.

When his party was in power, his supporters marked his birthday as Communal Harmony Day and he would cut a cake depicting a mosque, temple and church.

Lalu was born in Phulwaria village in Gopalganj district and grew up as the son of a poor milkman. His parents, who did not own any land, lived in a thatched hut and struggled hard to earn their living. When Lalu became the chief minister the first time, his elder brother was a peon in the government.

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