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JMM still waiting for BJP to accept demand for rotational govt

Source: PTI
May 15, 2010 21:56 IST
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Even as the Bharatiya Janata Party remained indecisive over formation of a new government in Jharkhand, its ally in the state Jharkhand Mukti Morcha on Saturday night stuck to its demand for heading the government by them in rotation.

"We have not yet got any formal proposal from BJP on that (rotational chief ministership)... we hope they will take a decision at the earliest, though in politics things get a bit delayed," JMM legislature party leader Hemant Soren, son of Chief Minister Shibu Soren said when asked whether his party has received any proposal from BJP on its demand for sharing power on a rotational basis for the remainder of its tenure.

Asked about the prospect of BJP finally withdrawing support to Shibu Soren government, Hemant said, "How can they be forced to form a government. We will evaluate options and think over if such a situation arises ... all we want is stability," he said.

On whether the chief minister, who is not an MLA, would contest a byelection to enter the assembly which he has to do within June 30, Hemant said it was for his father to decide who had the backing of the party.

Asked about the meeting of 8 JMM MLAs led by Simon in Jamshedpur last night demanding that Shibu Soren continue as chief minister, he said, their statements were 'unauthorised'.

Jharkhand Pradesh Congress Committee President Pradeep Kumar Balmachu, on the other hand, said,"We are not in favour of pushing out somebody from his chair or in favour of a mid-term poll. We are just observing. If a situation emerges, then we will see what can be done."

Asked about the reported meeting between him and some JMM MLAs led by Simon Marandi, who has been demanding that Shibu Soren continue as chief minister, he said, "Everyday he talks to me."

Yesterday, at the meeting in Jamshedpur, Stephen Marandi had said that he and the other MLAs favoured continuation of Soren as chief minister and there was no need for replacing him midway.

He had also accused 'Delhi-based political parties' of hindering Jharkhand's development, and said he did not want Jharkhand to run by 'remote control' or 'Delhi's interference'.

Hemant denied his party legislators were in touch with Congress. Pravin Prabhakar, vice-president of AJSU, a JMM ally, meanwhile, said "We would like BJP take a decision at the earliest to end the suspense in Jharkhand."

The political stalemate in the state was triggered by BJP's decision on April 28 to withdraw support to Shibu Soren government, a day after chief minister Shibu Soren had voted against BJP-sponsored cut motions in the Lok Sabha.

The decision was, however, put on hold. On May 8, BJP had announced in Delhi that it would head a new coalition dispensation for the remainder of the tenure of the government with support from alliance partners JMM and AJSU.

That same evening Soren had said in Ranchi that the new government would be on a rotational basis, stalling government formation. According to sources in the coalition, BJP was dithering as it had to decide on the new chief minister besides ensuring the consent of 18 JMM MLAs.

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