The unrest in the Congress in Jharkhand continues unabated as four legislators have opened a fresh front against party general secretary Avinash Pande and also sought immediate replacement of non-performing ministers.
The four legislators – Irfan Ansari (Jamtara), Rajesh Kachhap (Khijri), Naman Bixal Kongari (Kolebira) and Umashankar Akela (Barhi) – also defied Pande’s directive not to meet chief minister Hemant Soren for the next two months.
They have demanded that the Congress leadership should immediately replace the non-performing ministers from the party, arguing that their continuation will deeply hurt the organisation in the next elections.
In the 11-member coalition government, headed by Soren, the Congress has four ministers – Rameshwar Oraon (finance), Alamgir Alam (rural development), Banna Gupta (health) and Badal Patralekh (agriculture).
The four legislators questioned the performance of these four Congress ministers and claimed that the party would bear the brunt in the next assembly elections if they are not replaced now.
“Nine legislators have come forward to show their dissatisfaction over the work of Congress ministers. We will go to Delhi after Ram Navami with a detailed report and apprise Rahul Gandhi and KC Venugopal of the situation,” Ansari said.
They also met the chief minister and discussed development-related works in their respective constituencies.
Pande had earlier directed the Congress workers, leaders and legislators not to meet Soren, alleging that he is out to destroy the grand old party in the tribal-dominated state.
At a meeting of around 30 Congress leaders from Jharkhand, it was decided that the four ministers will be assigned six districts as part of the move to strengthen the organisation in the state.
Pande is also upset with Soren for not meeting him in the past few months. There has also been a talk of some Congress legislators being in touch with the Bharatiya Janata Party.