The newly formed Mahagathbandhan (grand alliance) in Jharkhand under the leadership of Chief Minister Champai Soren will face the floor test on February 5, Congress leader Ghulam Ahmad Mir said on February 3.
Speaking to media on February 3, Mir, the Congress in-charge of Jharkhand, said till the floor test happens, the MLAs will camp at a ‘protected place’. Several legislators in the ruling alliance, who left for Hyderabad after the swearing-in, are currently staying at a private resort in the Telangana capital ahead of the floor test in the Assembly.
#WATCH | Pakur | Congress incharge for Jharkhand, Ghulam Ahmad Mir says, "…Normally, it has never happened anywhere that a sitting CM is handing himself over to the law and giving an alternate so that the state does not suffer. The entire coalition – 49 MLAs – unanimously… pic.twitter.com/IvulEUgX5O
— ANI (@ANI) February 3, 2024
The move is seen as an attempt by the ruling combine to keep its flock together and pre-empt poaching attempts by the principal Opposition player–BJP.
“It’s unthinkable and unprecedented for a sitting chief minister to step down and hand the reins to a party colleague. The entire coalition unanimously picked Hemant Soren’s successor and formally proposed his name as the next chief minister to the Governor. We are thankful to the Governor for allowing the oath-taking ceremony to take place yesterday. The alliance will be invited for a floor test in the Assembly on February 5. Till then, all our MLAs will remain in a protected place,” the Congress leader said on the sidelines of the Congress’s ongoing Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra, which is currently in its Jharkhand leg.
#WATCH | Pakur | When asked about Congress MLA Irfan Ansari's statement – If a few ministers are repeated, there can be revolt within the party and the leadership must think, Congress incharge for Jharkhand, Ghulam Ahmad Mir says, "…Every MLA has some desire. He is a… pic.twitter.com/LUgrvDLIs5
— ANI (@ANI) February 3, 2024
The Assembly will convene for a two-day session on February 5.
Amidst the political unrest in the state, triggered by former CM Hemant Soren’s arrest by Directorate of Enforcement officials in an alleged land scam case, Champai Soren, a leader of the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha party, took oath as the Chief Minister of Jharkhand at the Raj Bhavan in Ranchi.
Alongside Soren, Congress’ Alamgir Alam and RJD’s Satyanand Bhokta also took the oath as ministers in the Jharkhand cabinet.
In the 81-member Jharkhand assembly, Jharkhand Mukti Morcha has 29, its ally the Congress has 17 seats while the RJD and the CPI (ML) have 1 seat each. With the support of 43 MLAs, the INDIA bloc has the numbers to sail through a floor test.
On the opposition bench, the Bharatiya Janata Party has 26 seats, AJSU 3 while Independents and others have 3 MLAs. One seat in the assembly is vacant. On February 1, Jharkhand Governor CP Radhakrishnan invited Champai Soren to Raj Bhavan to form the government in the State.
Champai Soren, a loyalist of JMM leader Hemant Soren, along with 43 legislators had met Jharkhand Governor CP Radhakrishnan at Raj Bhavan on Thursday, staking a claim to form the government in the State. Champai, the State transport minister, is a seven-time MLA, and he represents the Seraikella constituency in Jharkhand. Before joining the JMM, he was an independent MLA.
(with inputs from ANI)