Sushil Modi diagnosed with cancer, steps back from BJP’s Lok Sabha campaign

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New Delhi: Former Bihar Deputy chief minister Sushil Kumar Modi on Wednesday said he was diagnosed with cancer six months ago and, as a result, would not be participating in the BJP’s Lok Sabha poll campaign. Modi, 72, was previously listed by the BJP as one of its star campaigners for the state and was also named a member of its election manifesto committee.

“I have been battling cancer for the last six months. Now, I feel that the time has come to inform people about it. I will not be able to do anything for Lok Sabha elections,” he posted on X. “I have told everything to Prime Minister Narendra Modi. I will always remain grateful and dedicated to the country, Bihar and the party,” he wrote, eliciting a barrage of replies and wishes from his party colleagues, his supporters and leaders from different political parties.

Modi reached Patna on Wednesday evening and was seen coming out of Patna airport on a wheelchair.
Reacting to Modi’s ailment, senior BJP leader and Bihar Deputy Chief Minister Vijay Kumar Sinha wrote on X, “It’s shocking news for me. I pray to the almighty that our leader (Sushil Modi Ji) soon becomes healthy and active so that countless party workers like me can always benefit from his experience and his deep understanding of society and governance”.

Senior BJP leader and Union Minister Giriraj Singh wrote on X, “It is sad that Sushil Ji, who has dedicated his entire political life to social welfare activities, is seriously ill. I pray to God that you recover from this illness soon and become completely healthy”.

RJD supremo Lalu Prasad posted on X, “I am shocked and saddened to hear the health related news of brother Sushil Modi. I have known him for 50 years. He is a fighter and has a fighting spirit. I pray to the almighty that he gets well soon and becomes active in public life so that everyone can benefit from his long political experience.” Sushil Modi’s political career started as a student activist at Patna University. He became the general-secretary of Patna University Students’ Union in 1973. Lalu Prasad, who later came to be his biggest political rival, was the president of the union at that time.

Senior RJD leader and former state deputy chief minister Tejashwi Prasad told reporters, “The prayers and blessings of all RJD workers are with Sushil Modi Ji and his family. We all are praying for his speedy recovery”.

Former Bihar chief minister and Hindustani Awam Morcha-Secular (HAM-S) founder Jitan Ram Manjhi posted on X, “My brother Sushil ji, please never say that you will not be able to do anything in the Lok Sabha polls. You will soon get well and start working with us”.

During his political career spanning over three decades, Sushil Kumar Modi held various positions, including MLA, MLC and member of Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha. He served as the deputy CM of Bihar from 2005 to 2013, and again from 2017 to 2020.

Modi became an MLA for the first time in 1990 from Patna Central constituency and was made the chief whip of the BJP legislature party. From 1996 to 2004, he was the leader of the opposition in the state assembly. He became a member of Lok Sabha from Bhagalpur in 2004.

He gave up his Lok Sabha membership in 2005 and became a member of the legislative council, following which he was made the deputy chief minister with Nitish Kumar as the CM. He was elected to the Rajya Sabha in 2020, and retired earlier this year.

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