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Since 1st March, 1999
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Ekka, Mahto shed rebel fear

Ranchi, Dec. 29: Security is a cause of concern for the chief minister when it comes to campaigning in Tamar.

UPA candidates and Shibu Soren are not venturing into the remote interiors of the Assembly constituency, known to be a Naxalite stronghold.

And rivals are sure taking advantage of this. Undeterred by his dismissal from the cabinet, former rural development minister and Jharkhand Party leader Anosh Ekka is going the whole hog to campaign for his candidate, Gopal Krishna Patar alias Raja Peter.

The state’s former home minister Sudesh Mahto, too, campaigned for AJSU candidate Vijay Singh Manki in the remote interiors.

While Ekka was a minister, he never dared to visit the interiors because of security reasons and also preferred borrowing the chopper from the state government.

But now he has relinquished the security cover he once enjoyed and is not afraid to take any risks. “Why do I need the police when there are so many people to look after me? People have great expectations from my party’s candidate and I can’t hurt their feelings,” he added.

Speaking to a group of villagers near Dasam Falls, he praised Peter as a son of the soil and pointed out that Soren had always ignored Tamar.

“I have put everything at stake for you. The issue of corruption is only eyewash. I have stopped using the official car and have returned the security cover, much before I was sacked. My only fault is that I honoured your feelings and did not succumb to pressure politics. Now I want you people to do justice,” he told the villagers.

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