Hyderabad: Buses ready for JMM-led alliance MLAs at Begumpet airport

Ranchi: Amid uncertainty over the formation of government in the state, the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM)-Congress-RJD alliance is planning to shift their MLAs outside Jharkhand.

A bus carrying the MLAs of the alliance was seen outside Ranchi airport.

According to sources, MLAs have boarded a flight at Ranchi airport and are likely to fly to Hyderabad.

“The MLAs are likely to be shifted to Hyderabad. The flight has however not taken off yet due to low visibility,” they claimed.

Visuals from Hyderabad also showed buses being parked outside Begumpet airport.

Telangana minister Ponnam Prabhakar visited the Begumpet Airport in the morning reportedly to check arrangements made for the MLAs touching down in the city.

Speaking to reporters outside Ranchi airport, Jharkhand Congress president Rajesh Thakur claimed that the alliance has enough numbers to form the government.

“3-4 MLAs will stay in Ranchi to keep a watch here (in Jharkhand). We have enough numbers to form the government. All 43 MLAs are together, we have full confidence. We will keep meeting the Governor until he calls us to form the government,” Thakur said while speaking to reporters outside Ranchi airport.

“You know what kind of people they are….they can do anything anytime. A total of 43 MLAs are going,” Thakur added.

As the political atmosphere in the state grew tense on Thursday evening, Congress leaders did not leave a chance to criticize the BJP, and accused it of “crushing the mandate in every state.”

“Immediately after the resignation of the coalition government in Bihar, the Governor had sent an invitation to form a new government. But the invitation to form a government was not sent even a day after staking claim in Jharkhand,” Congress General Secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra said in a post on X.

“First, the Chief Minister was forced to resign by imposing ED. He was arrested. Now there are reports that efforts are being made to buy the MLAs by stopping the formation of the new government. First Bihar, then Chandigarh and now Jharkhand – BJP is crushing the mandate in every state by influencing through money,” she added.

Congress chief Mallikarjun Kharge criticized the delay on the part of Jharkhand Governor in inviting the JMM legislature party leader Champai Soren to form the government in the state, a ‘disrespect to the Constitution.’

“In the House of 81 MLAs, only 41 are majority. Despite having the support of 48 MLAs, not inviting Champai Soren ji to form the government is clearly a disrespect to the Constitution and denial of public opinion,” Kharge said in a post on X.

“Nails are being driven one by one into the coffin of Indian democracy by their Excellencies,” the Congress chief added.

Meanwhile, Congress General Secretary Jairam Ramesh said, “This is yet another example of political injustice.”

“By doing what is called ‘Horse-Trading’ in English, they are being given time only for that. This is not only injustice but also murder of democracy,” he said in a post on X.

Earlier in the day, Champai Soren along with 43 legislators met Jharkhand Governor CP Radhakrishnan at Raj Bhavan, staking claim to form the government in the state.

“We have demanded from the Governor that the process to start the formation of the new Government should begin. The Governor has also assured us that the process will begin soon,” Champai Soren told reporters after the meeting with the Governor.

“Currently, we have submitted the report with 43 MLAs in our support. We expect that the number will reach 46-47 so there is no problem. Our ‘gathbandhan’ is very strong,” he added.

Champai Soren met governor CP Radhakrishnan on Thursday along with 43 MLAs of JMM, showcasing a majority support enough to form government in the 81-member assembly state.

In the 81-member Jharkhand Assembly, the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM)-led alliance, which includes Congress and RJD ruling has 47 MLAs, including 29 of JMM, 17 of Congress, and 1 of RJD.

The BJP has 25 members and the AJSU party has three MLAs. The NCP and CPI (ML)L have one member each, apart from 3 Independents.

Meanwhile, JMM leader and former chief minister Hemant Soren was sent to one-day judicial custody by a special PMLA court in Ranchi, in connection with an alleged land scam case.

Soren was on Wednesday night arrested by the Directorate of Enforcement (ED) after six hours of questioning in the money laundering case linked to the alleged land scam.

According to the ED, CM Soren was questioned as a part of the probe into the “huge racket of illegal change of ownership of land by the mafia”.

The probe pertains to huge amounts of proceeds of crime generated by forging official records by showing “fake sellers” and purchasers in the guise of forged or bogus documents to acquire huge parcels of land valued in crores.

(The story is edited by Siasat newsdesk)