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President’s Rule extended in Jharkhand; polls possible by Sept
Published on 15 Jul. 2009 12:15 AM IST
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The Lok Sabha Tuesday extended the President's Rule in Jharkhand by six months even as Home Minister P. Chidambaram told the house that the elections for the state assembly may be held by the end of September. "It is my intention to ask the Election Commission to hold elections in the state as early as possible. It is possible by September end. We will hold elections soon after the monsoons," Chidambaram said in the Lok Sabha. He was replying to a motion moved by Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader and former Jharkhand chief minister Arjun Munda to end the President's Rule in the state. Munda was opposing the statutory resolution moved by Chidambaram for extending the central rule. Saying that President's Rule is not a panacea, Chidambaram rejected the allegations by the BJP and the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) that the Congress was trying to install a government through "horse trading". Later the house rejected the motion moved by Munda and adopted the resolution moved by Chidambaram. While supporting the government's resolution, Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) chief Lalu Prasad and Samajwadi Party leader Mualayam Singh Yadav said the elections in the state should be held as soon as possible. The President's Rule under Article 356 of the constitution was imposed in Jharkhand Jan 19, 2009 and the state assembly was kept in suspended animation after the then chief minister Shibu Soren lost a key by-poll from Tamar assembly constituency. He had to step down as he was not a member of the state assembly. No consensus could be formed on the leadership of an alternative government and the central rule was imposed.

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