The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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April march for govt curtains

Ranchi, Jan. 23: Babulal Marandi today held out the threat of a people’s march in the state capital in April. If the present government survives till April 10, he vowed to launch a mass movement on that day to pull it down.

“We will appeal to the masses to bring down the government. We will also appeal to the legislators to join the mass movement or get ready to face the music in the next poll,” said Marandi, announcing a people’s march would be organised in Ranchi on April 10 by the Jharkhand Vikas Morcha (Prajatantrik).

Formally joining the JVM(P) today, the former chief minister pointed out that the media had wrongly been using the name JVM (Democratic). The Election Commission has registered and recognised the party as JVM (Prajatantrik), he pointed out, and it could not possibly be translated into English.

On whether joining the new political party after having won the Lok Sabha byelection from Koderma as an Independent candidate could lead to a clamour for his disqualification, Marandi appeared unfazed. “My political rivals can do what they like to unseat me for joining a political party. I will submit my reply to the Lok Sabha Speaker when the time comes. And if I still lose my membership, people of Koderma will decide what needs to be done next,” he asserted.

Even before he had filed his nomination for contesting the bypoll, he said, the Election Commission had been sent the application for recognising JVM(P). After winning the election, he had informed the Speaker of his affiliation with the forum and of the attempts being made to get it recognised as a political party.

Ruling out any understanding with other political parties, and even the RJD, Marandi declared his party would contest the Palamau byelection.

The Palamau Lok Sabha seat is vacant following the expulsion of the incumbent, Manoj Kumar of RJD, for accepting cash in lieu of asking questions in the House. The byelection will be the first electoral test of the new outfit.

The new party is launching a membership drive in the districts tomorrow, he said. “The aim is to induct two lakh members in the next six weeks,” added Marandi.

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