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Jharkhand crisis: All eyes on governor

August 18, 2008 15:02 IST

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JMM withdraws support to Jharkhand government

With the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha withdrawing support to the 23-month-old United Progressive Alliance government in Jharkhand and Chief Minister Madhu Koda still expressing confidence for a solution, all eyes are on Governor Syed Sibtey Razi as different political parties are meeting him and placing their views.

The governor met a Bharatiya Janata Party-led National Democratic Alliance delegation and the Babulal Marandi-headed Jharkhand Vikas Morcha separately at Raj Bhavan on Monday morning and gave a patient hearing.

After emerging out of the Raj Bhavan, BJP's state unit president P N Singh told newsmen that the NDA had told the governor to dismiss the minority Koda government.

"After the largest ally JMM withdrew support on Sunday night, there should not be any delay in dismissing the government to pave the way for fresh elections in Jharkhand," Singh said.

The BJP has 29 MLAs while its NDA ally Janata Dal-United has four in the 81-member House excluding one vacant seat.

The governor on Sunday night said he would act according to constitutional norms after getting the JMM's letter of withdrawal. The JMM mentioned in its letter that the government had been reduced to a minority after 17 of its MLAs withdrew support.

In his reaction, Koda said he was continuing as the chief minister and would call on the Central UPA leadership soon.

Deputy Chief Minister Stephen Marandi said the government had been formed collectively by UPA allies and independents.

"So we have to collectively decide what the next step will be," he said.

Health Minister Bhanu Prut Sahi, who claims himself to be an Independent MLA even though the Forward Bloc maintains that Sahi had fought the 2005 polls on its ticket, described the JMM's decision to withdraw support as 'unfortunate'.

Water Resources Minister Kamlesh Singh of the Nationalist Congress Party said the JMM's decision was "sad" while Science and Technology minister Harinarayan (ind MLA) said the decision was "JMM's personal" and should have been a collective one.

Describing the withdrawal of support as the JMM's own decision, Welfare Minister and UGDP MLA Joba Manjhi said the UPA leadership would take next course of action.

Meanwhile, the Jharkhand Vikas Morcha president and former chief minister Babulal Marandi, who met the governor, said his party had demanded the governor to dismiss the minority government.

"We met the governor and demanded President's rule to pave way for fresh polls," Marandi told newsmen near Raj Bhavan in Ranchi.

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