The Opposition alliance led by Hemant Soren's Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) appeared poised to win a majority in the 81-member assembly. According to figures published by the Election Commission, the Congress-JMM-RJD combine was leading on 47 seats, crossing the magic mark in the house.
JMM was leading in 29 seats, its alliance partners Congress and RJD managed to get 14 and 4 seats respectively. The JMM and the Congress-RJD combine had contested the 2014 assembly elections separately. The three parties were, however, part of the coalition government led by JMM leader Hemant Soren from 2013 to 2014 before the elections took place. They parted ways over seat-sharing arrangements and the JMM chose to plough a lonely furrow.
The BJP, however, was stuck with 26 seats. It is contesting the assembly polls all by itself for the first time since the creation of Jharkhand in the year 2000, having always gone to the hustings with the AJSU party. The two parties failed to iron out their differences on the number of seats each would contest this time.
Raghubar Das refuses to concede defeat
Jharkhand Chief Minister Raghubar Das refused to accept his defeat. He said the trends did not reflect the final picture. Infact, Das went on to say that the saffron party would form government in the state. In 2014, the BJP chose Raghubar Das as a non-tribal chief minister. It was for the first time in the history of the state that a non-tribal was chosen for the top job.
Hemant Soren next CM
Meanwhile, Hemant Soren is said to be the next chief minister of Jharkhand if the political dynamics remain the same throughout the day. The Congress party too exuded confidence with RPN Singh stating: "We will form the government as we fought elections for the people of the state by raising issues that affect their lives and livelihoods. Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah tried to divert the attention of the people away from fundamental issues but the people did not get swayed." Reiterating that Hemant Soren of the JMM will be the chief minister as declared earlier, Singh said the Jharkhand results are a defeat of BJP's "arrogance and diversionary tactics".