Soren set to take power, independents fall in line

August 25th, 2008 - 5:01 pm ICT by IANS  

Ranchi, Aug 25 (IANS) Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) leader Shibu Soren to set to stake claim to form a new government in Jharkhand as seven independents extended their support to him. There were a total of nine legislators belonging to smaller parties or independents in the government of Madhu Koda, who has resigned as chief minister to make way for Soren.

According to JMM sources, only two independents — Koda and Chandra Prakash Chaurhdary — have not given their support to Soren.

Stephen Marandi, an independent legislator, was the first to oppose Soren’s candidature. But on Monday he announced conditional support to the JMM chief.

Marandi said: “One by one the independents have extended support to Soren. There are differences with Soren on various issues. I have a list of conditions. If Soren accepts them, I will support him.”

Marandi gave his consent to support a JMM-led government after Soren met him. Soren then met outgoing chief minister Koda.

Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) chief and Railway Minister Lalu Prasad is trying to convince Koda to give up his opposition to Soren.

The JMM has said it will meet Governor Syed Sibte Razi in the evening.

The other independents who have extended their support to a JMM-led government are Enos Ekka, Harinarayan Rai, Jhobha Manjhi, Bandhu Tirkey, Kamlesh Singh and Bhanu Pratap Sahi.

In the 82-member house, Soren has succeeded in getting the support of 42 legislators. The JMM has 17 legislators and the Congress and RJD have nine and seven members respectively.

Two suspended Bharatiya Janata Party legislators, Manohar Tekriwal and Vishnu Bhaiya, have also announced their support to Soren.

The Congress agreed to back Soren’s claim to be the chief minister of Jhakhand after JMM’s five Lok Sabha helped Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to win a trust vote in the Lok Sabha last month.

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