JMM President Shibu Soren on Thursady said only his party deserved to form a government in Jharkhand for which he was willing to hold talks with all parties, including the BJP, from Friday.

“If JMM could get the Statehood, it can also run the State. For this, we will talk with parties like the Congress, the BJP and regional parties for support,” Mr. Soren told a press conference here.

Asked whether former Chief Minister and BJP leader Arjun Munda spoke to him, Mr. Soren said they talked on phone a couple of days ago, but did not divulge what transpired.

Stating that the Congress had not yet approached his party, Mr. Soren said talks would begin from Friday.

Asked whether he had a soft corner for BJP, Mr. Soren shot back “How do you know that? In the interest of the State there should be talks with all.”

He said he would stake claim to form the government after discussions with all parties. Asked whether the stalemate would end by January 19 when President’s rule would come to end, he said “By then governance would have started”Shibu Soren, whose JMM became the single largest party with 18 seats, said it was unfortunate that Jharkhand was still poverty-ridden despite being a mineral-rich State.

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