M A I N   N E W S

BJP’s volte-face: Overnight, Soren again alliance-worthy!
Faraz Ahmad
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, April 29
A day after castigating outgoing Chief Minister Shibu Soren as unreliable and undependable, the BJP now appears to be coming to an understanding with the JMM to form a government in Jharkhand.

In no hurry

Deputy Chief Minister Raghubar Das and his party MLAs do not appear happy with the Central directive to withdraw support. So, while they were initially asked by the Raj Bhawan to meet the Governor at 11 am, they offered to defer the meeting to 5 pm. Munde indicated that the meeting could be postponed further, saying, “There could be some minor alterations.”

BJP parliamentary party spokesman Gopinath Munde said all party MLAs led by state chief and Deputy Chief Minister Raghubar Das are scheduled to meet Governor MOH Farook and submit their letter of withdrawal to this government. Miffed over Soren’s decision to vote against the BJP cut motions in the Lok Sabha on April 27, the parliamentary board under president Nitin Gadkari decided to withdraw support to Soren’s four-month old ministry.

Later, Leader of Opposition Sushma Swaraj called Soren unreliable and undependable and his action a “betrayal.” She also said that Raghubar Das, who also attended the meeting, had been asked to go back to Ranchi and hand over the letter of withdrawal to the Governor right away.

But much water flew under the Yamuna within 12 hours. By late night yesterday, Shibu’s son Hemant Soren publicly apologised for his father’s conduct, wrote a letter of apology to both Gadkari and Sushma and also obliquely offered to support a BJP-led government.

That is what seems to have made the BJP rethink the whole issue and within minutes a senior party leader told The Tribune: “That decision (withdrawal of support) was taken in haste.” This morning, the BJP core group met to deliberate.

Sources said while the BJP was still discussing who should lead the next government, there was a noticeable change in their mood. Two names doing the rounds are Hazaribagh MP Yashwant Sinha and Jamshedpur MP and former chief minister Arjun Munda.

Munde did not confirm either of the names but ruled out imposition of President’s Rule. “When neither we (BJP) nor Congress can form a government on its own, then we can’t say what will happen tomorrow. I will not say what will happen tomorrow,” he said.

There were also indications that the JMM MLAs would go along with Raghubar Das and give their letter of support for a BJP-led government. Munde also refused to call Soren’s action as a “betrayal.” 





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