Jan 8, 2009

India - Jharkhand Chief Minister Shibu Soren loses byelection

RANCHI: Jharkhand chief minister Shibu Soren, bidding to enter the state assembly, on Thursday faced the ignominy of losing the byelection when
Jharkhand Party candidate Gopal Krishna Patar defeated him by about 8,000 votes from the Tamar assembly seat. ( Watch )

The bypoll was held on January 3, the counting for which was taken up on Thursday.

Soren, who assumed charge on August 27, required to be elected to the assembly within six months from that date which was to end on February 27 next.

The Tamar seat fell vacant after JD(U) legislature party leader Ramesh Singh Munda was gunned down on July 9 last year by suspected Maoists.

With Patar winning the byelections, the Jharkhand Party increased its tally to two --- the other member being its president Enos Ekka, who was sacked by the chief minister on December 18 last.

Though the chief minister cited a vigilance FIR against Ekka, Ekka had claimed that he faced the axe for defying Soren's request to withdraw Patar from the fray.

Amidst strong indications of Shibu Soren quitting the chair, the JMM president has said he would meet the top UPA leadership and other state allies before taking a final decision on his continuation as chief minister.

"I accept the defeat. I will go to Delhi today or tomorrow and meet UPA leadership there, including RJD president Lalu Prasad, before taking any decision," Soren said when asked whether he would resign now or after meeting the UPA leadership following his defeat to rival Enos Ekka's Jharkhand Party candidate Gopal Krishna Patar.

"I will also meet state UPA chairman Madhu Koda, and other allies and seek their suggestions before taking a decision," Soren added.

Asked whether any UPA ally in the state worked "against" him during the polls, Soren said he had believed every ally during the contest.

Soren, who had resigned on March 11, 2005 during his previous nine-day stint as chief minister, said he had worked hard for the development during the last three months he got to serve Jharkhand.

No comments: