The Lok Janshakti Party (LJP) is a state political party in the state of Bihar, India. It was led by late Ram Vilas Paswan. The party was formed in 2000 when Paswan split from Janata Dal (United). The party has considerable following amongst Dalits in Bihar. The party was a member of the National Democratic Alliance. Actor turned politician Chirag Paswan is the party president.
In 2000, late Ram Vilas Paswan formed the Lok Janshakti Party as its president. Along with Paswan his brother, Ram Chandra Paswan, Capt. Jai Narain Prasad Nishad and Ramesh Jigajinagi also joined the party.
LJP contested the polls in alliance with the Indian National Congress and the Rashtriya Janata Dal and won four Lok Sabha seats. Ram Vilas Paswan remained a Union Minister in Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers and Ministry of Steel.
In the 2005 Bihar assembly polls held in February the party contested in alliance with the Congress and against the RJD and won 29 assembly seats. However no alliance could secure majority and party refused to give support to any alliance to form the Government. There were rumours that certain party MLAs were ready to defect to JD(U) allowing the formation of an NDA Government.
In a controversial episode, Presidents rule was imposed in the State and after a few months Bihars state assembly was dissolved. Elections were again held in October month in which NDA came to power with a thumping majority with Nitish Kumar as the Chief Minister. Party had fielded its candidates in 203 seats of which party could win only 10 seats.
The party contested the 2009 Lok Sabha General elections in an alliance called fourth front which constituted of the Rashtriya Janata Dal, Lok Janshakti Party and the Samajwadi Party. This move proved to be disastrous, since LJP couldnt win a single seat, and RJD were reduced to 4 seats in the Lok Sabha. After the election Laloo Prasad Yadav, admitted that it was a mistake to leave the UPA, and gave unconditional support to Manmohan Singh and the newly formed UPA government.
Jan Morcha the party founded by former Prime Minister Vishwanath Pratap Singh was merged with the LJP in March 2009. Jan Morcha president Ajeya Pratap Singh, son of Vishwanath Pratap Singh, was immediately appointed as a senior LJP functionary.
On the more disastrous side LJP suffered a major jolt when, its entire Jharkhand Unit merged with the Congress before the 2009 elections citing that Paswan had ignored them. Paswan then announced the dissolution of partys Jharkhand Unit.
In 2010 Bihar Legislative Assembly election, the party had contested in an alliance with Rashtriya Janata Dal. However party could secure only 6.75% votes winning only 3 seats which was 7 less than the previous elections in 2006.
In August 2011, there were claims made by the Speaker of the Bihar Legislative Assembly that the party had merged with JD(U) as 2 of the 3 MLAs of the party had joined JD(U). However the party had denied any such move.
On 27 February 2014, Lok Janshakti Party officially announced it re-entering the National Democratic Alliance led by Bharatiya Janata Party, after a gap of 12 years. It contested on 7 Lok Sabha seats from Bihar in 2014 Indian general election.
LJP won 6 of the 7 seats it contested including Ram Vilas Paswan and his son Chirag Paswan. Ram Vilas Paswan resigned from his Rajya Sabha seat. He was also made Minister for Food and Civil Supplies in the NDA government that came to power on 26 May 2014.
In 2015 Bihar Legislative Assembly election, the party contested in an alliance with BJP-led National Democratic Alliance. It contested 40 seats out of 243 in the assembly. It won only two seats, one less than the last election in 2010.
In 2017, Pashupati Paras brother of Ram Vilas was inducted into Nitish Kumar cabinet as Minister of Animal & Fish Resources after Janata Dal (United) joined BJP-led National Democratic Alliance.