21 June, 2021

Tied To The Stake

In Dumka, Shibu Soren faces Babulal Marandi, and possible ruin

Rajesh Kumar
Tied To The Stake

It is a tale of three chief ministers. As two former CMs joust over a Lok Sabha seat, the present CM of the state puts on the ‘dutiful son’ act. For Jharkhand Mukti Morcha’s Shibu Soren (70), visibly infirm and ailing, this is literally the end of a long and eventful journey. For his younger rival Babulal Marandi (Jharkhand Vikas Morcha-Prajatantrik), it is a dress reh­ea­rsal for assembly polls due later this year. And for Jharkhand CM Hemant Soren, son of Shibu, it is a matter of prestige as well as political survival. It’s an engrossing race worthy of a photofinish.

The last three weeks have seen Hemant camping at Dumka—the constituency where Shibu Soren and Babulal Marandi lock horns—while making quick forays to Ranchi to clear files. With his own government’s survival uncertain, Hem­ant is doing all he can to ensure Jha­r­khand’s first family does not lose the pocketborough. The JMM is not the mighty force it used to be, is contesting in alliance with the Congress, and in just four of...

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