Soren to face floor test on Jan 7; Teklal pro-tem Speaker
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Last Updated: Thursday, December 31, 2009, 00:08
Ranchi: Abiding by Jharkhand Governor K Sankaranarayanan's directive to take oath within 10 days, Chief Minister Shibu Soren today said he would take the floor test on January 7.

"The Cabinet has met here and decided to convene the Assembly on January 4 and move the confidence motion on January 7," Soren told reporters soon after taking the oath.

The three-member Cabinet also includes AJSU chief Sudesh Mahto and BJP's state unit head Raghuvar Das.

Five-time JMM MLA Teklal Mahto has been appointed as the pro-tem Speaker to conduct the House proceedings. The Governor will address the House on January 9.

Soren for talks with Maoists

Making a fresh offer of talks with the Maoists, the Jharkhand government today said that the state's Naxal policy would be reviewed.

"We are ready for talks. They should shun violence and tell us what they want. Do they want to run the government? If so, how? They should come forward for talks," Soren told a joint press conference with cabinet ministers Raghuvar Das and Sudesh Mahto.

Mahto, who had introduced a Naxal policy when he was the Home Minister in the Arjun Munda government in 2005, said the government would review it.

On acquisition of land for industry, Soren said there should be a good rehabilitation package. "See, how people lost their land and did not get compensation after the setting up of the HEC (Heavy Engineering Corporation). We would like to have a policy, which will give housing, employment and monetary benefits. They (land donors) should not suffer any loss," Soren said.

The government would review earlier compensation package, while NREGA would be made more effective and BPL citizens would be given 35 kilogram rice per month at the minimum possible price, Soren, whose government is backed by the BJP and the AJSU, said.

In its manifesto, the BJP had promised to provide rice and wheat to BPL families at Rs one per kg and salt at 25 paise per kg.

Soren's court date coincides with commencing of Assembly

Besides commencement of the first session of the new Assembly, January 4 is also the date on which Soren has been asked to appear before a Giridih court in connection with 35-year-old murder case.

During the last hearing a month ago, the Additional District and Sessions judge had directed Soren to appear on January 4.

The Jhakhand Assembly has also been convened on the same day.

Soren is one of the accused in a double murder case lodged in 1974. The quarrel was over the killing of a goat. Soren had appeared before the court several times in the past.


First Published: Thursday, December 31, 2009, 00:08

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