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NDA's Bihar team wins football match!
Salil Kumar in Jaipur |
March 05, 2005 19:22 IST
Last Updated: March 05, 2005 23:34 IST
Jaipur's Sawai Mansingh Stadium was on Saturday evening host to an unlikely football match.
Fully kitted in spanking new outfits, National Democratic Alliance MLAs, along with the five independents and the Rajasthan Bharatiya Janata Party squared up against each other.
Jharkhand won 3-1.
For those who came in late, the NDA has herded it stable of ministers and supporting MLAs from Bihar to the BJP ruled state of Rajasthan until the trust vote is held in the state.
Among those representing the BJP in Rajasthan were member of Parliament from Churu Subhash Mehiria, Younis Khan, the Rajasthan sports minister, and Ram Kishore Neena, a legislator.
At half time, with Jharkhand leading 2-1, Khan said, "Ours friends said they wanted to play football. And there cannot be anything like this."
Independent MLA Mahato said, "I have played football before. I am playing the game after 4 months. Life itself is a game."
Soon, reports came in from Ranchi that the assembly would be convened on March 10.
Asked for his initial reaction, Mahato said, "The trial of strength should have been much earlier."
At the prize distribution ceremony, where the payers were handed out plaques, Mahato said, "We are making winning a habit and this is a good start."
The match came at the end of a day when absolutely no information came out from the BJP camp.
The BJP government in Rajasthan had taken all steps to ensure that Jharkhand's National Democratic Alliance and independent legislators were kept in good spirits.
Most of them were put up at the Sunrise naturopathy health resort, 40 km from the stadium.
The five independent legislators, crucial if the NDA is to form the government in Jharkhand, were put up at an undisclosed location.
At around 1630, the independents -- Enos Ekka, Madhu Koda, Sudesh Mahato, Har Narayan Roy, Chandraprakash Choudhry -- joined the rest at the resort.
A source told rediff.com that the MLAs were meditating, having mud baths, Kerala massages etc.
Sources added that they were also using the swimming pool, jacuzzi and sauna
Mahato, on arriving at the resort along with the others, told reporters, "We have been saying for many days that we are with the NDA.
All 41 were paraded before the governor in Ranchi and yet he decided to invite the UPA. We were left with no option but to go to the President."
Enos Ekka denied that the Independents were getting any threats.
All the Independents said the governor should be recalled.
Journalists had started arriving at the resort right from 9am but NDA leaders were tight lipped. No journalist was allowed inside and queries went unanswered.
The journalists were left with no option but to perch at a vantage point on a hillock in front of the resort. There were policemen patrolling the rooftops.
Arjun Munda the chief ministerial candidate of the NDA was supposed to go to the meeting that the governor had convened.
But he stayed put at the resort.
Earlier, when the Goa MLAs were brought to the resort, one of the legislators managed to escape to Panaji. He resigned a few days later as MLA.
The BJP does not want to take any risk. So, while the Goa MLAs went shopping in Jaipur, the Jharkhand MLAs were not taken anywhere before the match.
Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundara Raje went to the resort at 1500 and spent an hour with the MLAs.
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