Ranchi, Jan 12: Jharkhand Chief Minister Shibu Soren, who had lost the assembly by-elections, resigned on Monday, Jan 12, paving the way for Champai Soren, another stalwart of the regional Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM).
Soren told reporters reporters on Sunday, Jan 11: "The JMM had met thrice and chose Champai Soren as its representative. We have sent this information to other members of our coalition in New Delhi and waiting for response. I am ready to resign.
"On Champai selection, RJD chief Lalu Yadav said the UPA will take a final decision. Both Congress and the RJD have been pressing Soren to quit immediately before deciding on his replacement. Meanwhile, Champai Soren, who has been elected by the party as its representative, said that he is willing to serve the state.
"I will keep the confidence of my party by performing my duties well and by serving the state and public as well," said Champai. Soren, who took over reigns of Jharkhand in August 2007 and under a constitutional obligation, was required to win an assembly poll within six months to remain the Chief Minister of the state. He lost the Tamar assembly election to his main opponent, Raja Peter who was a nominee of the National Democratic Alliance (NDA).
Raja Peter of the regional Jharkhand Party (an ally of NDA) defeated Soren by the margin of 9,062 votes.
Soren was sworn in as the sixth Chief Minister of Jharkhand on August 27, 2008 and won a trust vote in the Legislative Assembly on August 29, 2008. He previously represented the Dumka constituency of Jharkhand in the 14th Lok Sabha and is the President of the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM), a constituent of the UPA. Soren also served as the Minister for Coal in the Union Cabinet before becoming the Chief Minister.