31 Jan 2024

Jharkhand: Hemant Soren arrested, submits his resignation to Governor, Champai Soren will be next CM

ED arrested Jharkhand CM Hemant Soren on Wednesday after seven and a half hours of interrogation. The investigating agency took him into custody and reached Raj Bhawan from CM House at 8.15 pm, where Hemant Soren submitted his resignation. It was here that his close aide Champai Soren staked claim to form a new government.

Congress MLA Alamgir Alam said that our 43 MLAs are standing outside, if you want, you can count them. 

The majority figure in the Jharkhand Assembly of 81 members is 41. 43 MLAs had gone to Raj Bhavan with Champai. Whereas, he has the support of 48 MLAs. 

The alliance MLAs have elected Hemant loyalist and transport minister Champai Soren as their leader. 67 year old Champai Soren is the MLA of Seraikela. He is the vice president of Jharkhand Mukti Morcha and will be the next CM of Jharkhand.

The MLAs of the ruling coalition are currently in the Raj Bhavan. Five MLAs are meeting Governor CP Radhakrishnan there.

According to the ruling coalition, he has the support of 43 MLAs.

According to Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) MP Mahua Manjhi, Hemant Soren reached Raj Bhavan in the custody of Enforcement Directorate (ED) officials. ED officials had reached the Chief Minister's residence on Wednesday afternoon to interrogate Soren.

Amidst the fear of arrest of Chief Minister Hemant Soren, it was being claimed in media reports since Tuesday that if he steps down from the post of Chief Minister, then his wife Kalpana Soren can be made the leader in his place.

But, on Wednesday evening, Champai Soren's name came up as the leader of the legislature party.

A lot of political commotion was seen before Hemant Soren and other MLAs reached Raj Bhavan.

ED officials interrogated Hemant Soren for hours from noon onwards. During this time, there was a gathering of media outside the Chief Minister's residence.

Many JMM MLAs were also present there. In the evening, MLAs of the ruling coalition gathered there. Champai Soren's name was approved in the meeting.

Meanwhile, an appointment was taken to meet Governor CP Radhakrishnan. The MLAs got time to meet between 9 and 9:30 pm.

After this, buses were called to the Chief Minister's residence. After 7.30 pm, the MLAs of the ruling coalition reached Raj Bhavan in buses.

Congress MLA Rajesh Thakur told the media, "CM Hemant Soren has decided to resign. Champai Soren has been chosen as the new leader of the Legislative party. All the MLAs are with us." 

Soren was being questioned by Enforcement Directorate for more than six hours as part of an investigation into a "huge racket of illegal change of land ownership by the mafia" in Jharkhand.

Before this, Jharkhand Government Minister Banna Gupta said, "We have elected Champai Soren ji as the leader of the legislative party. We have come to request the Governor to administer the oath to him."

Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) MP Mahua Manjhi has said that the ruling coalition has the majority.

Mahua told, "Chief Minister Hemant Soren is currently in custody. He has gone to the Governor along with the ED team. All our MLAs are with him."

Mahua Manjhi said, "Right now only five MLAs have gone inside. Perhaps after the resignation, everyone will be allowed to go."

She said, "It has been decided in the meeting of MLAs that Champai Soren will be made the Chief Minister."

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