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National leaders to throng Ranchi

Star-studded swearing-in ceremony on the cards for Hemant Soren, political heavyweights confirm presence
Hemant Soren leaves after paying floral tributes at Albert Ekka Chowk in Ranchi on Friday.
Hemant Soren leaves after paying floral tributes at Albert Ekka Chowk in Ranchi on Friday.
Picture by Manob Chowdhary

Sanjeev Kumar Verma   |   Ranchi   |   Published 27.12.19, 10:08 PM

Former President Pranab Mukherjee, Congress leaders Rahul Gandhi and sister Priyanka, a host of chief ministers and national Opposition leaders will attend Hemant Soren’s swearing-in as Jharkhand chief minister here on Sunday, the JMM said on Friday.

The ceremony will be held at the Morabadi ground in the capital, which is being decked up for the big day.

“Former President Pranab Mukherjee, senior Congress leaders Rahul Gandhi, Priyanka Gandhi, P. Chidambaram and Ahmed Patel, Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav, NCP chief Sharad Pawar, DMK president M.K. Stalin, BSP chief Mayawati, RJD leader and former deputy CM of Bihar Tejashwi Yadav, senior socialist leader Sharad Yadav and CPI leader former president of JNU students’ union Kanhaiya Kumar have consented to be part of the oath-taking ceremony,” JMM general secretary Supriyo Bhattacharya said on Friday.

Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee, Rajasthan chief minister Ashok Gehlot, Madhya Pradesh chief minister Kamal Nath, Maharashtra chief minister Uddhav Thackeray, Chhattisgarh chief minister Bhupesh Baghel and Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal will also take part in the event, Bhattacharya said.

Some formers CMs including H.D. Kumaraswamy of Karnataka, N. Chandrababu Naidu of Andhra Pradesh and Harish Rawat of Uttarakhand will be attending the event as will prominent faces from the fields of industry, art and literature, Bhattacharya said.

The JMM leader said Narendra Modi had also been invited but owing to his busy schedule the Prime Minister had expressed his inability to attend. “The Prime Minister has promised that he will come to Jharkhand at a suitable date and our government will welcome him in a grand way whenever he comes,” Bhattacharya said.

Rajya Sabha deputy chairman and JDU MP Harivansh will take part in the oath taking ceremony. He has been closely associated with Jharkhand and had helmed a leading vernacular daily published from Ranchi for many years.

Asked whether Bihar chief minister and JDU chief Nitish Kumar would attend, Bhattacharya said: “The invitation has been sent to him but there has been no response till now. We hope that Nitish ji, who has been a great supporter of democratic values, will come to take part in an event which would be a kind of national canvas.”

Hemant wants books

The CM-designate spent Friday meeting people who had turned up in large numbers to wish him success.

He also posted two tweets in Hindi, urging visitors to bring books for him instead of flowers.

“Friends, I am overwhelmed by the love and respect of people of Jharkhand. I want to make a request with folded hands to you that instead of giving me bouquets give me books which are full of knowledge. I feel bad when I fail to keep flowers properly,” he said in the first tweet.

The second tweet, also in Hindi, said: “You write your name on the book and I will make a library using these books and your gift filled with love will always help in enriching our knowledge.”

JMM’s Bhattacharya said Hemant was a bibliophile: “I have seen him reading different kinds of books on several occasions. He also has a special love for books related to the field of engineering.”

Hemant did his BTech from BIT, Mesra.

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