JMM-Congress-RJD alliance wins assembly election in Jharkhand, links mandate to CAA, NRC

Updated: Dec 24, 2019, 07:37 IST | Agencies | Ranchi

The BJP, which secured 25 seats, attributed its loss to "local issues" and "internal strife", while the Opposition said the result appeared to be a verdict against the NRC and the CAA.

Hemant Soren is set to become the chief minister for the second time
Hemant Soren is set to become the chief minister for the second time

Ranchi: The alliance of Congress, RJD and Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) defeated the BJP in the assembly elections by winning 47 of 81 seats. The BJP, which secured 25 seats, attributed its loss to "local issues" and "internal strife", while the Opposition said the result appeared to be a verdict against the NRC and the CAA. JMM working president Hemant Soren, who is expected to become the chief minister, celebrated his party's victory by riding a bicycle home in Ranchi.

The JMM bagged 30 seats in the 81-member Assembly, while the Congress and RJD won 16 and 1 seats, respectively. The victory of the JMM-Congress-RJD alliance has come as a morale booster for Opposition unity and for the grand old party which is seeking to become relevant again in Indian politics after suffering two successive defeats in general elections.

Jharkhand Mukti Morcha working president Hemant Soren rides a bicycle at his residence in Ranchi on Monday as his father and party chief Shibu Soren and mother Ripu Soren look on. Pic/PTI
Jharkhand Mukti Morcha working president Hemant Soren rides a bicycle at his residence in Ranchi on Monday as his father and party chief Shibu Soren and mother Ripu Soren look on. Pic/PTI

The poll result indicates that local and real issues of farm crisis, economy and unemployment have found more resonance at the ground and that bodes well for the opposition in future polls to win back states from the BJP. It also shows that the caste equations against BJP are consolidating.

Cong victory in 7th state
Though the Congress has returned to power in seven states with the latest victory in Jharkhand, the last two successes have come primarily with the support of allies. While Congress is in power in the states of Punjab, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and Puducherry on its own, it has come to power in Maharashtra and Jharkhand jointly with the support of its allies Shiv Sena and NCP and Jharkhand Mukti Morcha.

P Chidambaram
P Chidambaram

Party leaders feel that the BJP is not invincible and can be defeated if like-minded parties get together. This, they feel, has been proved right in some states and the experiment can be implemented in upcoming polls. "The Opposition unity and better coordination can be replicated in other state polls too and this will give positive results," said Congress's Jharkhand in-charge RPN Singh. He added that the results show that the people of Jharkhand have demolished BJP's "arrogance and diversionary tactics". 

'BJP-mukt Bharat'
Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh took a dig at the BJP's slogan of "Congress-mukt Bharat" and said today's results "have paved the way for a BJP-mukt Bharat". "With these results, BJP's divisive agenda had not only been exposed but had also been rejected outright by the people," Singh said.

Who is Hemant Soren?
Hemant Soren, the son of Jharkhand architect Shibu Soren, is set to take up the reins of the state for a second term. He emerged as the winner from both Dumka and Barhait constituencies. He won the Dumka and Barhait seats by margins of 13,188 and 25,740 votes, respectively.

Hemant had been the face of the Opposition alliance in the state. Born on August 10, 1975, at Nemra village in Ramgarh district of Jharkhand, Hemant went on to become a Rajya Sabha Member in 2009-2010, before becoming Jharkhand's youngest chief minister in 2013 with the support of the Congress and the RJD. Hemant's rule was, however, short-lived as BJP seized power in 2014 in the politically unstable state, and Raghubar Das took over.

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