The Bharatiya Janata Party leadership on Saturday started negotiations here with the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha on the nitty-gritty of formation of a government in Jharkhand, amid reports of serious differences within the JMM over who should lead it.
Chief Minister Shibu Soren has not yet resigned; the BJP has made it clear he will have to make way for a new leader; in the JMM there are open differences on whether the party should negotiate with the BJP or the United Progressive Alliance; Mr. Soren and his son Hemant are not exactly talking the same language; and worse, late night reports are that Hemant has asked the BJP to let his father continue as Chief Minister for a month or two.
In the forenoon, senior BJP leaders assessed the situation among themselves. There was a view that the party must first come to a conclusion on whether the JMM meant business or not.
“The leadership issue can be discussed later,” a party leader said, referring to the question which BJP leader should lead a new government.
The former Chief Minister, Arjun Munda, and the former Finance Minister and Hazaribagh MP, Yashwant Sinha, are names uppermost in the party's mind, with Mr. Munda enjoying an edge as a result of his tribal status.