Talks between the Bharatiya Janata Party and the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) on a future government set-up in Jharkhand seem to have reached a dead end.
The BJP leadership on Friday apparently turned down a JMM proposal of a 50:50 power sharing arrangement under which each of the two coalition partners would head the government for half of the tenure of five years.
This proposal was reportedly made by Hemant Soren, State Minister and son of Chief Minister Shibu Soren, who was here for talks with the former BJP president, Rajnath Singh, and senior general secretary Ananth Kumar. The party was wary of accepting such an arrangement as it felt the JMM could not be trusted to keep its side of the bargain.
Leader of the Opposition Sushma Swaraj told journalists that there was no question of accepting this arrangement. “Either the JMM delivers on its assurance that it would support the BJP and help it form a government or else the party will withdraw support and let the Shibu Soren government fall as earlier decided by the BJP Parliamentary Board.”
However, there are sceptics in the party who feel the current arrangement could well continue as the BJP is a partner in the coalition government. Those in the BJP who are Ministers in Jharkhand are also opposed to withdrawing support. They stand to lose their ministerial berths.
There is a strong opinion in the party that bringing the government down would mean paving the way for President's Rule and would be counter-productive when in a few months the Assembly elections are due in Bihar.