Photo: Narendra Modi/Twitter
Photo: Narendra Modi/Twitter

New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi today tweeted a remembrance message for his former Cabinet colleague and late "friend" Ram Vilas Paswan on the latter's birth anniversary, adding that he misses "his presence greatly".

"Today is the birth anniversary of my friend, late Ram Vilas Paswan Ji. I miss his presence greatly. He was one of India's most experienced Parliamentarians and administrators," tweeted PM Modi.

"His contributions to public service and empowering the downtrodden will always be remembered," added the Prime Minister.

Ram Vilas Paswan, who died last October days after a heart surgery, was the union minister for consumer affairs, food and public distribution.

Chirag Paswan, son of Ram Vilas Paswan, is presently fighting his uncle Pashupati Paras for control of his Lok Janshakti Party (LJP).

"Happy Birthday Papa Ji. Miss you a lot. I am trying my best to fulfil the promise given to you. Wherever you are, you will also be sad to see me fighting in this difficult situation. I am your son, I will not give up. I know your blessings are always with me," tweeted Chirag Pawan, who has earlier announced that he will undertake "Aashirvad Yatra" from Hajipur in Bihar on the occasion.

The LJP, which has six MPs but no MLAs, plunged into a crisis after the five lawmakers, including Chirag Paswan's cousin, rebelled against his leadership and chose Pashupati Kumar Paras as the new leader of the parliamentary party.

Chirag Paswan said he had expected the BJP to help sort things during the tussle between him and his uncle Pashupati Kumar Paras to retain control of the outfit.

PM Modi regularly wishes both his party members and opposition leaders on their birthdays.

In March, he wished Nitish Kumar, who heads the BJP coalition in Bihar; Madhya Pradesh chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan and Union Cabinet Minister Smriti Irani, who defeated Rahul Gandhi in his pocket-borough of Amethi in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections. The PM also tweeted birthday greetings to Punjab Chief Minister and Congress leader Amarinder Singh.

In December, the PM had wished Congress president Sonia Gandhi a "long and healthy life" on her birthday.

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