Governor Syed Ahmed takes a guard of honour at Project Building in Ranchi on Sunday. Picture by Hardeep Singh
Ranchi, Jan. 20: Advocate-general Anil Kumar Sinha put in his papers on a day governor Syed Ahmed took the reins of Jharkhand that has been placed under President’s Rule.
“Sinha tendered his resignation in the morning. The governor is likely to pass an order in this connection by the evening. Necessary actions will be taken accordingly,” said governor’s principal secretary Aditya Swaroop.
Sinha’s resignation has triggered speculations in the political and bureaucratic circles as to who would step into his shoes with the Raj Bhavan expected to begin a hunt soon.
A senior official at Raj Bhavan said the names of former advocate-general Sohail Anwar and senior advocates like Rajeev Ranjan and A. Allam were doing the rounds.
However, Anwar is of the opinion that the governor might ask Sinha to continue in office till alternative arrangements were made. “This is usually the practice. The governor might also immediately appoint a new advocate-general. But this chair usually does not remain vacant,” he said.
Considering the numerous pending cases in Jharkhand High Court and the judiciary repeatedly voicing its strong reservations against the functioning of official machinery, the advocate-general’s role is crucial. The state government makes the appointment.
“As the Congress seems to be reluctant in forming an alternative government in the state in the coming days, the governor may be very selective while making new appointment. Large-scale transfer and posting of officials are also likely. After all, the Congress-JVM alliances had won 25 Assembly seats in 2010 because of the positive initiatives taken by Raj Bhavan during the President’s Rule,” said an official.
Congress spokesperson Radha Krishna Kishore said at the Jaipur summit, party workers submitted an application to president Sonia Gandhi, saying that an alternative government in Jharkhand at this stage would be suicidal. “The AICC meeting is still on. We have already conveyed our feeling to Soniaji,” he told The Telegraph over telephone.
Senior JMM leader and former deputy chief minister Hemant Soren’s sudden dash to Delhi has, however, kindled speculations of sorts. But JMM core committee secretary Vinod Pandey maintained that the junior Soren went to the national capital for personal reasons.
“Something will be worked out soon. Till now, everyone was busy with cricket. Now, senior Congress members are in Jaipur,” he added.