Ahead of the 2024 general elections and the ruling JMM led by CM Hemant Soren facing charges of corruption slapped by the Enforcement Directorate, the Congress appears busy strengthening the party apparatus in Jharkhand.
Soren seems to have decided to buy time to deal with the seventh summon issued by the ED by reflecting that if a “ proper summon” is issued by the central agency, he will appear before it to “facilitate” its investigation into money laundering linked with mining and land scam.
Records show that Soren had during the past four years led the JMM in trying to build its support base among AM concept -Adivasis( tribals) and Muslims in the state.
Traditionally, among Adivasis, Christian tribals normally and traditionally backed Congress whereas Muslims played a shifting strategic electoral game to vote for any candidate belonging to the strong non-BJP party.
Against this backdrop, the Congress high command appears to be gearing up to gain support among both general and Christian Adivasis as well as Muslims.
Toward this end, JMM MLA Sarfaraz Ahmad, who had quit Congress to join JMM had quit JMM on Monday.
On Tuesday, newly appointed Jharkhand in-charge of Congress, Ghulam Ahmad Mir, who landed in Ranchi, asserted that the party's prospects in the state are “bright.
“On his arrival at the Ranchi airport, Mir is aware that Soren is desperately trying to deal with the ED’s seventh summon by delaying to face the ED amid the opposition BJP floated rumour.
So, speaking to media persons at Ranchi's Birsa Munda Airport, Mir said, "This is my visit to Jharkhand and my priority is to take feedback from party workers and interact with them, following which we will decide on the future course of action."
Sarfaraz Ahmad is expected to join his old Congress party to lead it from the front. Also, Mir who is AICC general secretary, is on a two-day visit to Jharkhand.
During these two days, Mir is scheduled to hold several rounds of meetings with top party leaders of the state, including district presidents and other leaders. When asked whether he would meet CM Hemant Soren, Mir said he would first meet party workers and if required, would call on the CM.
As it is, in politics, several games are being played by coalition partners of the so-called I.N.D.I.A block to gain ground in the forthcoming general elections in 2024. "The prospects of the Congress in Jharkhand are very bright," he has added.
Notably, Mir was given a warm welcome at the airport by Jharkhand Congress president Rajesh Thakur, state cabinet ministers Banna Gupta and Badal Patralekh and former Union minister Subodh Kant Sahay.