Sushil Modi is one of the most prominent figures in Bihar politics. Referred to as SuMo, the Bihar Deputy Chief Minister emerged out of the 1974-75 Jayaprakash Narayan (JP) movement. He figures among the NDA's star campaigners for the upcoming October-November Bihar elections. However, he took a break from campaigning on Thursday after he tested positive for the novel coronavirus.
Sushil Kumar Modi was born on January 5, 1952. He pursued his BSc from BN College in Patna, further Botany Honors in 1973. After completing his graduation at Patna Science College, Sushil Modi participated in Jayaprakash Narayan's movement. He forayed into politics during his student life. In 1973, he was elected the General Secretary of Students' Union at Patna University.
He became an RSS worker and joined active politics only in the mid-1980s. Back then when he kickstarted his political innings, BJP had stalwarts such as Kailashpati Mishra, Tarakant Jha, and Lalmuni Choubey. During the 1995 assembly polls, BJP emerged as the main opposition party but the central leadership went ahead with former bureaucrat Yashwant Sinha as leader of the Opposition over Sushil Modi. Sinha, however, had to resign in the wake of the hawala case and was replaced by Sushil Modi in 1996. After NDA's victory in the 2005 assembly polls, Sushil Modi became Nitish Kumar's deputy.
The Nitish-Sushil bonhomie
Sushil Modi has been Nitish's man. He often faces the allegation of being a JD(U) man in the BJP camp. The duo's bonhomie goes back to the mid-1970s when, along with Lalu, they mobilised the students' movement against the Emergency under Jayaprakash Narayan's leadership. Known to be a determined leader, Sushil Modi came into prominence in 2005 when his rise to power as deputy CM led to infighting within the BJP. He was jailed five times during the JP Movement and the Emergency.
The rapport between the Nitish and Sushil Modi is undying. Ahead of the upcoming polls in the state, both the leaders held joint election campaign, starting off with a public meeting in Buxar. Both of them launched blistering attacks on rival Lalu Prasad highlighting the crime situation and lack of development during his RJD rule in the past. Reeling out comparative data during 15 years under the RJD and an equal period under the NDA now, the two leaders sought another chance from voters to speed up development work in the state in the next five years.
Kumar and Sushil Modi sought support for BJP as well as JD(U) nominees on four seats of Buxar, Dumraon, Tarari and Jagdishpur.