Parties explore tieups for Jharkhand polls

Ranchi (IANS) With Jharkhand Assembly elections only two months away, political parties have started exploring poll tie-ups, tightening loose ends and connecting with workers.

While the Congress and the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) have decided to contest the elections jointly, they are yet to finalise seat-sharing formula. However, the Congress has agreed to be the junior partner to the JMM, according to state Congress chief Rameshwar Oraon.

On the alliance, Oraon said, “Everything is pre-decided, and the grand alliance will be announced soon.” The main goal was to dislodge the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) from power in the state, he added.

According to sources, the JMM will contest 44 seats, the Congress 27 and the rest will go to other ally partners. Of this, five seats each may go to the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) and the Left parties. Jharkhand has a 81-member House.

Former Chief Minister Babulal Marandi’s Jharkhand Vikas Morcha – Prajatantrik (JVM-P) is unlikely to join the grand alliance.

Marandi told IANS any decision would be taken only after talks with the party workers. In the next five days, the party leaders would go door-to door to gauge public views, he added.

The RJD leaders too are not satisfied with five seats. State RJD chief Abhay Kumar Singh told IANS, we would like to contest more seats. The partners of the grand alliance were yet to meet and discuss the seat-sharing, he added.

Sources said trust deficit was the biggest issue in the opposition alliance. No one was sure of the partner parties pre- or post-poll stances and each was insisting on larger share of seat, they added.

The opposition parties might have different coalitions in Jharkhand, but to expect a ‘mahagathbandhan’ was meaningless, said political critic and senior journalist Baijnath Mishra.

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