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Five MLAs quit House

Ranchi, Aug. 25: Five MLAs, who defected from the JVM to join the BJP recently, today tendered their resignations as members of the Assembly, reducing the House strength to 73.

Speaker Shashank Shekhar Bhokta accepted their resignations.

This morning, Sindri MLA Phulchand Mandal appeared in person before the Speaker and put in his papers while four other JVM turncoats faxed him their resignations.

The four MLAs are Samresh Singh (Bokaro), Nirbhaya Kumar Shahabadi (Giridih), Chandrika Mahtha (Jamua) and Jai Prakash Singh Bhokta (Simaria).

However, Bhokta asked the MLAs to appear in person latest by 5pm. Ultimately, to avoid any stern action, Shahabadi, Mahtha and Jai Prakash Singh turned up at Bhokta’s chamber to submit their resignations. Bokaro MLA Singh, nevertheless, called the Speaker over telephone to say that he was not well and urged him to accept his resignation.

“Today was the last hearing in the cases filed against these MLAs under the anti-defection law. I had asked all of them to come in person. But he (Samresh Singh) called up to say that he was unable to come on health grounds. I have accepted the resignations all of them,” Bhokta told The Telegraph.

Earlier, the Speaker had given time to the JVM turncoats to explain why they should not be tried under the Tenth Schedule of Constitution. After deferring the hearing twice earlier, the Speaker had fixed August 25 (today) for the verdict.

This apart, JMM rebel Simon Marandi, the Littipara MLA who joined the BJP last week, is also facing anti-defection charge and has been asked to explain his position by August 26.

“He has been asked to explain why he should not be tried under the anti-defection law,” the Speaker said.

The model code of conduct for the Assembly elections is likely to come into effect very soon and, thus, these resignations are unlikely to affect the health of the current Hemant Soren government.


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