After dilly-dallying for nearly a month, the BJP on Monday withdrew support to the Shibu Soren government in Jharkhand reducing it to a minority.

Deputy Chief Minister and BJP leader Raghuvar Das handed over the letter withdrawing support to the Shibu Soren government to Governor M.O.H. Farooq.

“I have handed over the letter of withdrawal of support to the Governor. When the Governor asked me about the signatures of party MLAs, I said I will collect them and hand them over by tomorrow,” Mr. Das told reporters at the Raj Bhavan.

The Governor said he will “study it.”

Frustrated over the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha backtracking on its power-sharing agreement in Jharkhand, the BJP had decided on Sunday to withdraw support after a defiant Mr. Shibu Soren asserted that he would continue as the Chief Minister and was in touch with the Congress.

The BJP parliamentary board had on April 28 decided to withdraw support to the JMM government after Mr. Shibu Soren voted against the party-sponsored cut motion against the UPA government in the Lok Sabha a day earlier.

However, the decision was put on hold when the JMM legislature party leader and Mr. Shibu Soren’s son Hemant Soren wrote a letter to BJP chief Nitin Gadkari pledging support to a BJP-led government.

But, the JMM backtracked and demanded rotational power sharing with each party leading the government for 28 months.

This was agreed to by the BJP on the understanding that Mr. Shibu Soren will quit as Chief Minister by May 25 after which Arjun Munda will head the new coalition government.

As the deadline for his stepping down approached, Mr. Shibu Soren made it clear on Friday that he was not going to quit.

“The question of a change of government comes if there is no development. But now development is going on,” he had told reporters.

The Chief Minister had on Saturday went a step further saying he was weighing all options, including cutting a deal with the Congress to continue in power.

The Shibu Soren government now has 27 MLAs, including 18 of its own, five of the AJSU, two of the JD(U) and two others in the 81-member House.

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