Baripada: Ruling out joining the proposed Third Front, JMM leader and Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren on Monday said its alliance with the Congress was intact and they would jointly contest the Lok Sabha polls.
Turning to Odisha, Soren said the Morcha is yet to decide about forging any state-specific poll alliance with any party here and any decision in this regard would be taken at the right time.
Exuding confidence that JMM was hopeful of greater success in Odisha as compared to the 2009 polls, Soren said the state unit was now re-galvanised and prepared to fight the polls in a more confident manner.
The Central Committee of JMM under the leadership of Sibu Soren would decide in (appropriate) time how many and which seats the party would contest, he said.
Slamming the Odisha government for allegedly hatching a conspiracy to deny the tribals their legitimate rights, Soren questioned its seriousness about the claim of all-round development of tribals in the state, and cited the 2011 census which showed that tribal population in the state dwindled as compared to 2001 census.
Soren rued that though Jharkhand had accorded recognition to Odiya and Bengali languages, his counterpart in Odisha did not bother to include Santhali and other tribal languages in state list as second language even after 11 years of inclusion in the 8th schedule of Constitution.
Besides, the Odisha government also failed to honour the originator of Santhali script Olchiki, Pandit Raghunath Murmu though he was a native of Mayurbhanmj district, Soren said.
The Jharkhand Chief Minister also announced a Rs 100-crore package for the development of national highway connecting Baharagora to Ranchi, linking Baripada-Ranchi route over submission of a memorandum by Mayurbhanj Bus Owners` Association.
JMM Odisha unit chief and ex-MP Sudam Marandi and state spokesperson Krushnananda Mohanty were present in the press conference.