‘Beginning of BJP’s end’: Oppn leaders after Hemant Soren takes charge as Jharkhand CM
Top opposition leaders said on Sunday the term of Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) leader Hemant Soren as the Jharkhand chief minister was the beginning of the end of the BJP-era in the country.
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, the DMK’s MK Stalin and MK Kanimozhi, RJD’s Tejashwi Yadav, Aam Aadmi Party’s Sanjay Singh, CPI general secretary D Raja, CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yachuri, former JD(U) leader Sharad Yadav and Hindustani Awam Morcha’s Jitan Ram Manjhi were present when Governor Droupadi Murmu administered the oath of office and secrecy to Hemant Soren.
Besides, West Bengal chief minister Mamta Banerjee and her counterparts from Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh—Ashok Gehlot and Bhupesh Baghel respectively—were among those present at the ceremony in Ranchi’s Morabadi area.
ALSO WATCH | Hemant Soren takes oath as the 11th chief minister of Jharkhand
The JMM swept to power in Jharkhand this week by unseating the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in an alliance with the Congress and the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD). The alliance won 47 seats in the 81-member assembly in the five-phase elections that ended on December 20. The BJP won 25 seats.
Political observers said this was first such gathering of opposition leaders during an oath-taking ceremony since that of the short-lived Congress-Janata Dal (Secular) government in Karnataka headed by HD Kumaraswamy in May 2018.
Their presence on a common stage gains significance in the context of protests against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act and the proposed National Register of Citizens (NRC) and the resistance that opposition parties have put up against Centre’s move to implement them.
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi congratulated the people of Jharkhand for electing the JMM-led alliance government.
“The BJP-RSS combine is a grave threat to the Constitution as well as the nation. A nation-wide campaign - ‘Save India and Save Constitution’- is going on. Jharkhand gave a great message to the nation in this regard,” CPI general secretary D Raja said while speaking to reporters at Ranchi’s Birsa Munda Airport.
Congress leader Udit Raj, who switched from the BJP to Congress before the Lok Sabha polls, said: “this is beginning of the end of BJP-era”.
“The countdown has begun. The BJP is losing all states gradually. No state will remain in its hand in the coming days. Delhi, Bihar, West Bengal and Assam will also see non-BJP governments,” Raj said.
Senior RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav said, “Opposition parties’ unity and coordination rooted out the BJP government from Jharkhand. This message has spread across the country. Its impact could be seen even in Bihar.”
Political observer LK Kundan said the opposition parties are not just showing their collective disagreement against the citizenship act through this gathering but also gearing up for the future.
“Gathering of top opposition leaders sends out a message about their unity against new citizenship law as a large number of people in the country stood against it and they are protesting it on streets,” Kundan, who teaches political science at Ranchi University, said.
“Opposition parties are trying to cash in on the opportunity to regain their political space. The unity also holds significance in view of upcoming assembly elections in Delhi, Bihar and West Bengal,” he said.