- Supporters of Lalu Prasad met him on buffalos
- The man riding the buffalo announced himself as Natwarlal
- The trio admitted to have come all the way from Mahua in Vaishali district
Stripped down to their waists and with their torsos painted in a dark shade of green, three die-hard supporters of RJD president Lalu Prasad on Friday reached the residence of his wife Rabri Devi to pay obeisance to their leader. What made the sight more bizarre was slogans denouncing the CBI inconspicuous white over the green paint and one of the three fans of the former Bihar CM riding a buffalo, its body similarly colored.
Spectators had some more reason to have a good laugh when the rider of the buffalo announced that his name was "Natwarlal", evoking memories of the infamous conman who, incidentally, belonged to Siwan, a district adjacent to Prasad's native Gopalganj. One of the two companions of Natwarlal was Mithilesh Pandit who pretended to lead the cattle with his tiny frame, less than three feet tall.
They said they were coming all the way from Mahua in Vaishali district, nearly 45 km away, and that although in their middle age, they considered RJD's 30-something heir apparent Tejashwi as their "pitaji" (father) while Prasad and Rabri Devi were "dada-dadi" (grandparents). They asserted that the image of the lantern -- RJD's poll symbol -- was indicative of their reverence while the slogans against CBI expressed the anguish they felt over their dear leader's "harassment through fabricated corruption cases".
With a swagger, they claimed that "Lalu-ji keeps talking to us over the phone even when he is in Ranchi or Delhi. He wanted to see us. So here we are". They insisted that they had taken off their clothes since "children have nothing to hide from parents" and the buffalo was "a symbol of our leader's journey. He started off herding cattle and reached the top".
The RJD supremo came out of the house soon afterward, in a long cavalcade that headed for the assembly where his daughter Misa Bharti was filing her nomination papers for the Rajya Sabha poll. The trio was finally shooed away by security personnel who muttered under their breath "sahib (Lalu) is a Shiv-bhakt (devotee of Lord Shiva). His presence here attracts a Shiv-ji ki baraat".