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Jharkhand polls: JMM-led alliance trounces the BJP in Jharkhand

Poornima Joshi New Delhi | Updated on December 24, 2019 Published on December 23, 2019

Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) working president Hemant Soren addresses a press conference as JMM and Congress alliance lead in the Jharkhand Assembly election results, in Ranchi, on Monday, December 23, 2019. - PTI

Hemant Soren will lead the next government

Just six months after a sterling performance in the Lok Sabha elections, the BJP was roundly defeated in the Jharkhand Assembly polls on Monday with Chief Minister Raghubar Das trailing by a margin of 15,725 votes till the filing of this report. State BJP president Laxman Giluwa and a number of senior ministers lost their seats.

Das submitted his resignation but Governor Droupadi Murmu asked him to continue till the next government is formed.

The Chief Minister was trailing in the prestigious Jamshedpur (East) seat, which he has won for five terms consecutively since 1995, to his former Cabinet colleague and BJP rebel Saryu Rai, who contested as an independent.

The Opposition alliance’s Chief Ministerial candidate, Hemant Soren, won the Dumka seat and was set to win also Barhait. Thanking alliance partners, Congress President Sonia Gandhi and RJD Chief Lalu Prasad, Soren said, “This is the dawn of a new era in Jharkhand where politics of the poor and the marginalised has triumphed and politics of arrogance has been defeated.”

In an election where the ruling party pitted a muscular Hindutva narrative and credibility of its national leadership, especially Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who campaigned extensively, along with Home Minister Amit Shah, to overcome popular resentment against the CM Raghubar Das and his controversial land rights policies, the people decidedly voted for the Opposition alliance led by Soren of the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM). The JMM fought the election in a pre-poll alliance with the Congress and the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD).

Thanking the people for the opportunity to serve the State for many years, Modi said: “Congratulations to Hemant Soren and the JMM-led alliance for the victory in Jharkhand polls. Best wishes to them in serving the State,” he tweeted.

 

 

Till results last came in, the JMM was set to emerge the single largest party with 30 seats in the 81-member Assembly. With the Congress leading in 16 seats and the RJD in one, the Opposition alliance was set to comfortably sail through the simple majority mark by gaining a total of 47 seats.

The BJP was down by at least 14 seats since the last Assembly polls in 2014 with leads pointing to the ruling party getting a total of 25 seats. This was a drastic comedown for the BJP since the Lok Sabha elections in which the ruling party along with the AJSU won 12 seats out of the total 14 and a vote share of over 55 per cent.

 

Published on December 23, 2019
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