New Delhi/Ranchi: Jharkhand Monday appeared headed for a fresh spell of President`s Rule with
both Congress and BJP giving up efforts to form an alternate
government with support of Shibu Soren-led JMM.
Home Minister P Chidambaram today met Congress
president Sonia Gandhi after Jharkhand Governor M O H
Farooq sent his report to the Centre. Farooq is understood to
have recommended President`s Rule after meeting leaders of
major political parties in Ranchi.
A meeting of the Union Cabinet has been convened
tomorrow to consider the Governor`s report which was sent a
day after Soren resigned as Jharkhand chief minister, hours
before the trust vote in the Assembly.
The Soren government was reduced to a minority on May
24 when BJP, with 18 MLAs and JD(U) with two, withdrew support
to it. The JMM, with 18 MLAs and having the support of seven
other legislators, was short of the required 42 in the
The BJP took the decision after Soren voted against the
cut motions sponsored by the opposition in the Lok Sabha on
Congress, with a strength of 14, and its ally JVM(P)
with 11 members, said it did not have the numbers to stake a
claim to form the government.
Sources in the AICC meanwhile maintained that since
elections for Rajya Sabha from the state are to take place
next week, a brief spell of central rule for sometime could be
an option to allow the political situation in the state to
Elections are to be held for two Rajya Sabha seats in
the state. Congress hopes to win one seat easily in a
triangular contest. If the Assembly is dissolved immediately,
elections for Rajya Sabha will have to be delayed.
Congress, which was under pressure from its state unit
for exploring possibilities of forming an alternative
government, today made it clear that it won`t risk its
credibility by hitching with an "unpredictable" JMM.
"We had almost decided in the very beginning that we
won`t go for an alternative government formation in the state.
We do not want to risk our credibility. Everything is so
unpredictable in JMM, where Soren says something and his son,
Hemant, something else," said a senior Congress leader on
condition of anonymity.
AICC in-charge for the state K Keshava Rao
categorically said that the party does not have sufficient
numbers to provide a stable and honest government there.
"We do not want to get into this atmosphere of
horse trading," was the refrain of Rao, when asked why his
party is not exploring any political alternative in the state.
Congress spokesperson Jayanthi Natarajan said, "We
have been waiting and watching. Congress has never been in a
hurry. We are interested in doing what is best for the people
there... The situation is fluid there."
BJP spokesperson Nirmala Sitharaman said, "We have
withdrawn support. We are at the moment not looking at forming
a government in the state but keenly watching the Congress
party and its movements."