‘I am a simple man, she’s a modern woman’: Tej Pratap says his marriage to Aishwarya Rai was a mismatch.

RJD chief Lalu Prasad Yadav’s son Tej Pratap, who has filed filed a divorce petition to seprate from his wife of six months, on Saturday said he was a simple man and was forced to marry the “urbane” Aishwarya Rai against his wishes in May this year.

The former Bihar minister said he was living a “stifled life” since his marriage. His reaction comes a day after he filed a divorce petition at the Patna civil court.

Rai could not be immediately reached for comment.

Soon after the matter came to light, Ms Rai and her parents rushed to meet Tej Pratap Yadav’s mother Rabri Devi at her residence. Lalu Yadav, who is also the head of the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD), summoned Tej Pratap Yadav to the Ranchi Jail, where he is being held. Relatives said efforts are on to make him withdraw the divorce petition.

Yadav said he was not willing to withdraw his petition, which is expected to come up for hearing on November 29.

Speaking to reporters in the pilgrim town of Bodh Gaya, where he made a brief stopover on his way to Ranchi to meet his ailing and incarcerated father Lalu Prasad, Tej said, “I had told my parents that I did not wish to marry at this moment of time. But nobody listened to me. Ours was a mismatch. I am a simple man with simple habits while she is a modern woman, educated in Delhi and used to life in a metropolis.”

Rai is the daughter of RJD MLA Chandrika Rai. Her grandfather Daroga Rai was the chief minister of Bihar in the 1960s. The couple had tied the knot in Patna.

While no member of their family has commented on the matter yet, Tej Pratap Yadav’s advocate Yashwant Kumar Sharma confirmed that all was not well between the two. “They couldn’t get along. An application under the Hindu Marriage Act was filed through me on the behalf of Tej Pratap Yadav. I can’t say anything else at the moment,” he said.

Tej Pratap Yadav had married Ms Rai in a high-profile ceremony attended by over 10,000 guests at the sprawling veterinary college grounds on May 12. The event was attended by many dignitaries, including Bihar Governor Satya Pal Mallik, Union Minister Ram Vilas Paswan, Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav and Chief Minister Nitish Kumar. Lalu Yadav, jailed in connection with the fodder scam, was granted three-day parole for the purpose.

Tej Pratap’s behaviour has often raised questions that there was strife in the party and the family after Tejashwi was picked as Lalu Prasad’s chosen heir and served as Bihar Deputy CM and currently as Leader of the Opposition in the Bihar assembly.

Tej Pratap Yadav had recently announced his entry into Hindi films by tweeting the poster of the movie “Rudra: The Avatar” in June. He acted in a Bhojpuri film two years ago, while he was still a minister in the Bihar cabinet. Just a few days ago, a video showing him dressed as Lord Krishna and playing the flute to a herd of cows went viral on the social media.

Ms Rai, the daughter of RJD MLA Chandrika Rai, is an MBA graduate from Amity University in Noida.



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