Jharkhand government reduced to minority

Last Updated: Mon, Jan 07, 2013 13:20 hrs

Ranchi, Jan 7 (IANS) The JMM Monday withdrew support from the BJP-led Arjun Munda government here over the issue of "rotation of power", reducing it to a minority in the 82-member house and plunging the state into a political crisis.

"Today (Monday) we have decided to withdraw support from the government," Deputy Chief Minister Hemant Soren and son of Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) chief Shibu Soren told reporters here.

"We had put some points before the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leaders. The points include change of guard and sharing of power after 28 months," he said.

The party also sought apology from a BJP MP for allegedly passing indecent remarks about the JMM chief.

"The decision when the support will be formally withdrawn will be taken by party chief Shibu Soren," he said.

Asked when his party would go to the governor's house to formally convey the withdrawal of support, he said: "We will inform (the reporters)."

The JMM executive committee met here earlier Monday.

Chief Minister Arjun Munda also met Shibu Soren for half-an-hour earlier Monday to defuse the crisis over the issue of "rotation of power" between the coalition partners. Munda did not speak to media after the meeting.

The JMM Sunday night announced it would take a decision at its executive committee meeting Monday on whether or not to continue its alliance with the BJP.

Relations between the two had been strained ever since Munda in a written reply to the JMM Jan 3 denied that there was an agreement between them on "rotation of power" after 28 months in office.

The 28-month period ends Jan 10.

The JMM has five ministers in the BJP-led cabinet, including Deputy Chief Minister Hemant Soren.

The BJP-led government headed by Munda was formed in September 2010 with support of the JMM, which has 18 legislators in the assembly.

Apart from the BJP's own 18 legislators, the party also has the support of six All Jharkhand Students Union (AJSU) members and two Janata Dal-United (JD-U) members.

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