No longer wooing the JMM, the Congress now mulls possibility of forming government in Jharkhand without its help.
The Congress and it’s ally, the Jharkhand Vikas Morcha-Prajatantrik (JVM-P), were Friday mulling the possibility of forming a government without the support of the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) as they are against the idea of its leader, Shibu Soren, becoming the chief minister.
JVM-P president Babulal Marandi said Shibu Soren’s demand was unacceptable. “There could be a government without the JMM,” Mr. Marandi told reporters here.
The Congress and the JVM-P have won 25 seats in the 81-member assembly. The JMM has won 18 seats. If the JMM, Congress and the JVM-P come together, they will cross the 41 seat mark needed to form the government.
“In the given scenario, it is difficult to form the government as the JMM sticks to its demand of the chief minister’s post. We have not given up hope of government formation but at the same time, it is not an easy task. We are exploring the possibilities of a government without JMM,” a Congress leader said.
The Congress could form a government without JMM by seeking support of the Rashtriya Janta Dal (RJD), the All Jharkhand Students Union (AJSU) and Independents. In the 81-member house, RJD and AJSU have five seats each. If these 10 seats are added, the Congress alliance could reach 35.
It will then have to seek support from two jailed former ministers - Enos Ekka and Harinarayan Rai - facing graft cases. The Congress – JVM-P may also need the backing of Geeta Koda, wife of former chief minister Madhu Koda who is now in jail on corruption charges.
It can also get the support of three other Independents - Videsh Singh, Chamra Linda and Bandhu Tirkey.