Cong, JVM logjam over choice of RS candidate



Ranchi: The Jharkhand Vikas Morcha (Prajatantric-JVM) has refused to support Congress in the Rajya Sabha elections if both the parties failed to reach consensus on fielding a joint opposition candidate.

"When AICC leader Shakeel Ahmed called me yesterday I told him that our party wants a person having accomplishment in social service or any other distinguished person as a joint opposition candidate," JVM’s principal general Secretary and party’s legislature leader Pradip Yadav told a news agency today.

"But Shakeel Ahmed (Congress in-charge for Jharkhand Affairs) sounded determined of Congress fielding its own choice candidate. In that case, I told him our party will stay away from voting," Yadav said.

Congress which has 13 MLAs and the JVM 11 legislators had fielded Pradeep Kumar Balmachu and Praveen Singh respectively in the March 30 RS elections for the two seats.

The elections were countermanded following reports of alleged horse-trading.

The EC announced fresh elections slated on May 3.

The logjam between the two opposition allies comes in the backdrop of JMM spokesman Suprio Bhattacharya asserting that ruling coalition partners, JMM and BJP, were in a situation where both their candidates could romp home victorious in the biennial RS elections.

Both the BJP and the JMM have 18 MLAs in the 82-member house with the effective voting strength being 80 following a vacant seat and a nominated member.

BJP announced SS Ahluwalia as its candidate while partner JMM has fielded Supreme Court advocate Sanjeev Kumar.

PTI