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Delhi summons for Cong ministers

Ranchi, June 20: The Congress leadership today summoned state party president Sukhdeo Bhagat and all Congress ministers in the Hemant Soren-led coalition government for a meeting in Delhi to discuss the future of the alliance with the JMM.

Congress general secretary in charge of Jharkhand B.K. Hariprasad said a meeting with senior party leader A.K. Antony, who looks after alliances, was scheduled on Sunday.

“The meeting is to discuss where we stand in Jharkhand politically with talks taking off from where we had left during our Ranchi Chintan Shivir,” Hariprasad told The Telegraph, amid unconfirmed reports that a coordination committee of various parties, headed by former Union minister Jairam Ramesh, had been dissolved.

The reason attributed to the move was that the committee, a UPA legacy to keep channels of communication open among allies, had lost its relevance and Ramesh, its chairman, was no longer a minister.

The other members of the committee are Hariprasad and state minister Rajendra Prasad Singh, besides others from the JMM, RJD and a few Independents.

But, state Congress leaders denied any move to disband the committee.

“No such decision has been taken. It is a rumour that may have gained ground as only state party president Bhagat, CLP leader Rajendra Prasad Singh and a couple of others have been invited for the meeting,” Hariprasad said, alluding to a break in tradition when senior party leaders like Ramesh would always be included in any meeting on Jharkhand.

Sources in the Congress claimed that the meeting would also review performances of all four Congress ministers namely, Geetashree Oraon, Yogendra Sao, K.N. Tripathi and Singh.

Asked whether Sunday’s meeting would take a final decision on continuing the alliance with the JMM, Hariprasad said such decisions could be taken only after through discussions in the light of ground realities.

“Right now, the Congress is in alliance with the JMM and supporting the government. We are not pulling down the government at this moment. There may be other aspects of the alliance with the JMM, too, that may be taken up. For instance, we may discuss how to make best use of the tie-up in the coming Assembly elections,” the party general secretary said.


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