5 Feb 2024

Champai Soren Secures Jharkhand Assembly Majority as Hemant Soren's Successor

In a decisive victory, the Champai Soren-led government in Jharkhand successfully cleared the majority test in the Assembly this afternoon, securing 47 votes out of the 81-member Assembly. With one MLA resigning last month, the majority mark required was 41.

The ruling coalition, comprised of the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha, the Congress, and the Rashtriya Janata Dal, had expressed confidence in their ability to navigate the test. Twenty-nine votes were cast against the Champai Soren government.

The floor test was conducted in the wake of dramatic developments in the tribal-dominated state. Former Chief Minister Hemant Soren resigned followed by his arrest by the Enforcement Directorate on January 31. Hemant Soren faces investigation by the central agency in a money laundering case, which he vehemently denies, labeling it a BJP conspiracy.

The ruling JMM-Congress coalition stood firmly behind Champai Soren as the successor to Hemant Soren. Taking oath as Chief Minister on Saturday with two deputies, Champai Soren received support from the coalition.

Hemant Soren was present in Assembly for floor test

Despite his ongoing legal challenges, Hemant Soren was present in the Assembly for the floor test with court permission. Champai Soren, in his remarks before the test, expressed the aspiration for his government to be a continuation of "Hemant Soren part - II."

In a emotionally charged address, Hemant Soren criticized the BJP-led central government, alleging a "slow-cooked" conspiracy against him. He also accused the Raj Bhavan (Governor's residence) of involvement in this alleged conspiracy. He echoed earlier concerns raised by the JMM and Congress regarding the delay in the Governor inviting Champai Soren to form the government.

Challenging the BJP, Hemant Soren dared them to produce evidence in the land irregularities case for which he was arrested, stating, "Show me the proof, and I will quit politics."

Expressing a strong plea for tribal communities, Hemant Soren accused the BJP of looking down on backward communities. "They do not want tribals to rise. They do not want us to become judges, IPS or IAS officers. They do not want us to become leaders," he said, adding that he knew that hurdles will be created to ensure that he does not complete his five-year term.

Expressing resilience, Hemant Soren declared that he will not succumb to pressure and assured a befitting reply to what he referred to as feudal forces. He drew attention to the challenges faced by tribals and Dalits under the current regime, emphasising the need to thwart opposition conspiracies.

Hemant Soren criticised the BJP's approach, accusing them of destabilising democratically elected state governments. He pointed to the misuse of central agencies like ED and CBI as a threat to democracy. The Chief Minister, Champai Soren, echoed these sentiments, asserting the pride of being "part 2" of Hemant Soren's administration.

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