As the session of Jharkhand Assembly began today,JMM MLAs gave a rousing welcome to arrested former chief minister Hemant Soren on his arrival to the House and raised slogans like ‘Hemant Soren Jindabad’ and ‘Hamara Neta Kaisa Ho Hemant Soren Jaisa Ho’ for about five minutes. 

 Forty MLAs of Jharkhand’s JMM-led alliance who had been sent to Hyderabad for three days due to fear of horse trading, landed back in Ranchi on Sunday evening. The legislators exuded confidence of winning the trust vote in the assembly on Monday, soon after their return. 

The ruling coalition currently has 47 MLAs in the 81-member Jharkhand Assembly after Gandey MLA Sarfaraz Ahmed quit on January 2 reportedly to accommodate Hemant Soren’s wife Kalpana as the former CM’s arrest seemed imminent. 

 The JMM has 29 MLAs while allies Congress and RJD have 17 and one MLA respectively. Sources said the lone CPI(ML) legislator, Vinod Singh, has also extended support to the coalition.

“Hemant hai to himmat hai”(If Hemant Soren is there we have courage), said Champai Soren as he began his address in the special session of the Jharkhand assembly today, as he moved a confidence motion in 81-member state Assembly.  

The state had plunged into a political crisis after Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) chief Hemant Soren resigned as CM and was subsequently arrested on January 31 by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in connection with a money laundering case. 

Subsequently, state transport minister and JMM leader Champai Soren staked claim to form the government and was appointed Chief Minister-designate by Governor C P Radhakrishnan on February 1.

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