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Poll fever yet to pick up in Jharkhand as Congress, JMM and JVM (P) delay candidate announcement

Congress’ Jharkhand media in-charge Rajesh Thakur however exuded confidence that the differences would be sorted out. “Congress will officially announce the candidates’ names in two to three days,” he added.

lok sabha elections Updated: Mar 28, 2019 11:53 IST
Gautam Mazumdar
Gautam Mazumdar
Hindustan Times, Ranchi
JMM President Sibu Soren ,working president Hemant Soren , JVM(P) President Babulal Marandi , state Congress President Ajoy Kumar showing list of seat sharing of "Mahagathbandhan " for the Lok Sabha poll(Diwakar Prasad/ Hindustan Times)

Delay in announcing the candidates’ names in Jharkhand for the Lok Sabha election by Congress, Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) and Jharkhand Vikas Morcha (Prajatantrik) (JVM-P) is restricting the poll fever from picking up in the eastern state.

It was further telling upon the patience of the respective party workers waiting on the wings, after the BJP named its candidates from 11 seats. Jharkhand has 14 Lok Sabha seats.

Not to be perturbed over early announcements of BJP candidates,Congress and JMM were treading cautiously, fearing possible defections that gained ground, after the ripples that rocked the state RJD unit following Annapurna Devi joining BJP.

Difficulties brewed after the departure of Annapurna, and to tide it over, RJD announced its candidates from Chatra and Palamu. Chatra was allocated to Congress, as per the seat-sharing agreement between opposition parties in Jharkhand. RJD’s announcement has worried Congress,as the party was in the process of picking up a suitable candidate to contest and win from Chatra.

Congress’ Jharkhand media in-charge Rajesh Thakur however exuded confidence that the differences would be sorted out. “Congress will officially announce the candidates’ names in two to three days,” he added.

JMM’s concern is too many applicants for the Jamshepur Lok Sabha seat in Jharkhand. The names that were doing the rounds are Bahragora MLA Kunal Sarangi, Kartik Mahto, Mohan Karmakar, Sunil Mahto, Babbar Khan, former MP Abha Mahto and Arvind Singh.

Moreover, the regional party was busy in providing final touches in Odisha, where assembly and general elections will take place simultaneously.

In Odisha, JMM has announced to contest five assembly seats besides the Mayurbhanj Lok Sabha seat. In Mayurbhanj, JMM has nominated party chief Sibu Soren’s daughter Anjali Soren as a candidate. The party will try its luck from Birmitrapur and Rajgangpur (ST seats) in Sundergarh district besides Morada, Saraskana and Bangriposi assembly seats in Mayurbhanj district of Odisha.

JMM would first announce the candidates’ names for Odisha assembly polls, besides the Lok Sabha candidates from West Bengal and Bihar, in a day or two. “The announcement of the party candidates for the four Lok Sabha seats of Jharkhand will be done next week,’ said JMM leader Abhishek Pintu.

JMM was also in the process of picking up candidates from five to six Bihar Lok Sabha seats and eight to nine West Bengal Lok Sabha seats, said party general secretary Supriyo Bhattacharya.

In Bihar, JMM will field its candidates from Gaya, Katihar, Purnia, Kishanganj, Jamui and Banka. In West Bengal, JMM candidates will contest from Raiganj, Malda (North), Malda (South), Balurghat, Birbhum, Bolpur, Asansol, Bankura, Purulia and Jhargram, Bhattacharya said.

In Jharkhand, JMM has decided to continue fielding party president Sibu Soren from Dumka and Vijay Hansdak from Rajmahal Lok Sabha seats respectively. The party will have to pick the best candidate from Giridih among the two present MLAs - Jagannath Mahto and Jai Prakash Patel, and former legislator Mathura Prasad Mahto.

Though JVM (P) has decided to field party chief Babulal Marandi from Koderma and Pradeep Yadav from Godda seats that are in its kitty, the final announcement will be done after the working committee meeting on March 30, said party spokesperson Yogendra Prasad.

First Published: Mar 28, 2019 11:53 IST