Hemant Soren’s wife Kalpana to contest bypoll from Gandey assembly seat

Seat in Giridih district fell vacant following the resignation of JMM MLA Sarfaraz Ahmad.

Ranchi: The Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) on Thursday announced that Kalpana Soren, wife of jailed former chief minister Hemant Soren, will contest the bypoll from Gandey assembly seat.

The seat in Giridih district fell vacant following the resignation of JMM MLA Sarfaraz Ahmad.

Bypoll to Gandey assembly seat is scheduled on May 20 along with the parliamentary elections in the state.

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The party also announced the candidature of Samir Mohanty, the sitting MLA from Baharagora, from Jamshedpur Lok Sabha seat.

Kalpana had embarked on a political journey at the 51st foundation day celebration of JMM in Giridih district on March 4, claiming that a conspiracy had been orchestrated by opponents ever since the Hemant Soren coalition government came to power in 2019.

Hemant Soren was arrested by the ED on January 31 in connection with a money laundering case linked to an alleged land fraud, subsequent to his resignation as CM.

After the ruling JMM-led alliance proved its majority on February 5 and her husband made a fiery speech in the assembly, Kalpana had taken to X to announce that the “fight against injustice and oppression will continue”.

Previously considered a frontrunner for the position of chief minister but facing opposition from Sita Soren, she declared, “I have fought, and I will continue to fight! We have won, and we will win!”

A homemaker with MTech and MBA qualifications, Kalpana completed her education in Odisha’s Mayurbhanj district and obtained her engineering and MBA degrees in Bhubaneswar.

Hemant’s arrest had sparked speculation that Kalpana would assume leadership. However, a family rift emerged, with his sister-in-law, Sita Soren, openly opposing any move to make Kalpana the chief minister.

Sita questioned Kalpana’s political inexperience and objected to her potential candidacy, dismissing it as BJP propaganda. Hemant dismissed speculations of Kalpana contesting from Gandey, labeling it as BJP’s fabrication.

Speculations regarding Kalpana’s candidacy arose following the resignation of ruling JMM’s Gandey MLA Sarfaraz Ahmad in December, with the BJP claiming it was to facilitate Kalpana’s candidacy in case of ED summonses.

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