Soren in a huddle with MLAs ahead of ED date today
In a show of strength, JMM workers from across Jharkhand are converging in Ranchi, where Soren is expected to reach ED’s regional office around 11.30 am.
Jharkhand chief minister Hemant Soren held a series of meetings with ruling alliance legislators on Wednesday, a day before he is due to appear before the directorate of enforcement (ED) in an ongoing illegal mining case being probed by the federal agency.
Earlier in the day, Soren chaired a meeting of his party JMM legislators, while Congress legislature party leader and rural development minister Alamgir Alam held a meeting of his party MLAs separately.
Speaking to reporters after the meeting of ruling alliance legislators, JMM leader and water resources minister Mithilesh Thakur said, “There is a conspiracy to destabilise our government elected with a massive mandate. It was discussed in the meeting. We are confident we will complete our full five-year term,” said Thakur.
Jharkhand Congress president Rajesh Thakur said the ruling alliance was intact and there was no threat to the government.
On November 9, the ED had issued second summon to the chief minister, asking him to appear before it in the case in which its has already made three arrests, including of a close political aide of Soren. The agency had issued the first summon on November 1, asking him to appear before it on November 3. However, Soren skipped appearance, citing official engagements.
Meanwhile, in a show of strength, JMM workers from across the state are converging in the state capital, where Soren is expected to reach ED’s regional office around 11.30 am.
Congress leader and state health minister Banna Gupta, however, ruled out any minister or legislator joining the CM on his way to ED office. “But we can’t say about the normal party workers,” he said.
Sources, however, said the ministers and legislators would gather again at the CM’s residence on Thursday morning before Soren leaves and are likely to stay put there till the time the CM stays in the ED office.
All legislators have also been directed to stay put in Ranchi for the next few days.
Congress legislators and senior leaders, who were to depart on November 17 to join Rahul Gandhi’s Bharat Jodo Yatra, have postponed the plans, party leaders said.
Earlier in the day, former BJP MLA Jaiprakash Verma, along with his supporters, joined the JMM in presence of CM Soren at his residence.
Addressing the new entrants, Soren said, “Some submarines are trying to come out of water. But we are prepared to defeat all conspiracy against me. They know that if this man rules for five years, he would empower adivasis and moolvasis in such a way that they would show exit door to outsiders ruling the state in the past. You continue to support me and I would take all of them one by one.”