The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Legal battle, but at home

Giridih/Ranchi, Dec. 4: A Jharkhand court today issued a production warrant against Shibu Soren in a double murder case, acceding to the request of the JMM leaderís counsel a day before he faces sentencing in Delhi over the killing of his former personal secretary Shashinath Jha.

The court of the first additional district and sessions judge in Giridih, hearing the Pirtand double murder case, ordered Soren to be produced before him on December 21.

Sorenís counsel Prakash Sahay informed the court that his client was lodged in Tihar Jail and could not be produced in Giridih. Sahay then argued that if the court deemed it right, it could issue a production warrant against Soren.

Public prosecutor Virendra Rai did not oppose the argument and judge Radhamohan Tiwari issued the production warrant.

Political sources appeared happy with the order as they felt it would be better if Soren was brought to Jharkhand at the earliest. The hearing in the Chirudih massacre case, in which the former minister is an accused, is also coming up for hearing on December 12 in a Jamtara court. The sources said Sorenís counsel would press for a production warrant there as well.

The political scene shifted to Delhi with chief minister Madhu Koda, along with some of his colleagues, leaving for the capital. The additional sessions judge is expected to pronounce the sentence tomorrow, having convicted Soren in Jhaís murder.

Almost all JMM MPs and MLAs are already camping there.

Sorenís son Hemant rubbished reports that there was any move to install his mother Rupi Soren as chairperson of the UPA steering committee. Nor is there any lobbying for the cabinet berth vacated by his father, he said. ďOur only aim is to bring him out of the crisis,Ē he said.

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