CEC sends letter to J’khand Guv recommending Soren’s disqualification as MLA

Ranchi: The Chief Election Commission has sent a letter to Jharkhand Governor Ramesh Bais recommending cancellation of the Assembly membership of Chief Minister Hemant Soren.

He will then have to resign from the post of chief minister.

Former Jharkhand Chief Minister Raghubar Das and the BJP have been demanding disqualification of Soren as MLA in an office of profit matter.

They accused Soren of extending a mining lease to himself.

Terming it as violation of the office of profit and Representation of the People’s Act, the BJP and Raghubar Das have written a letter to the governor.

With the issuance of the Governor’s order on the instructions of the Election Commission, Soren’s membership will end. In such a situation, Soren may have to resign as the chief minister. However, the JMM-Congress alliance which is led by Soren has a majority in the Assembly. So, after the resignation he can again stake claim to form the government in the state.

Governor Bais, who is currently in Delhi, will reach Ranchi later in the day. An announcement in regard to the EC’s recommendation is expected after that.

It is not clear whether Soren has also been disqualified from contesting elections.

The lease of a stone quarry in Angada block in Ranchi was issued in the name of Soren which he had surrendered later. However on the BJP’s complaint, the EC conducted many rounds of hearings. After hearing the matter, the EC had reserved the decision on August 18.

In 2019, Soren was elected MLA from Dumka and Barhait Assembly constituencies. Later, he resigned from the Dumka Assembly constituency. Dumka Assembly constituency then went to the polls which his brother Basant Soren won.

Basant Soren is also accused of taking mines lease while being an MLA and a hearing in this matter is also going on in the EC. The poll panel has fixed the matter for hearing on August 28.

As Basant’s case is similar to Hemant Soren’s, the former is also likely to lose his membership.

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