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Shibu Soren

JMM chief Shibu Soren takes his first dose of COVID-19 vaccine in Ranchi.

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Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) leader Shibu Soren at Parliament House complex, during ongoing Budget Session, in New Delhi.

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Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) chief Shibu Soren being offered cake by Chief Minister Hemant Soren during his 77th birthday celebration, in Ranchi.

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Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) Chief Shibu Soren meets his party workers and supporters on his birthday in Ranchi.

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Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren along with JMM Supremo Shibu Soren, Jharkhand Congress in-charge RPN Singh, and State Finance Minister Rameshwar Oraon launches 'Jharkhand Yojana' on the 1-year completion of Hemant Soren-led Jharkhand government at Mohabadi ground, in Ranchi.

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Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) Chief Shibu Soren holds a meeting with party workers ahead of the by-elections, in Dumka district.

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Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) chief Shibu Soren arrives at Birsa Munda International Airport after the former was discharged from AIIMS (New Delhi) after recovering from COVID-19, in Ranchi.

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Jharkhand Mukti Morcha Chief (JMM) chief Shibu Soren being taken to Gurugram's Medanta Hospital by a special medical ambulance for further treatment of COVID-19, in Ranchi.

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Jharkhand Mukti Morcha Chief (JMM) chief Shibu Soren during his transit by a special medical ambulance to Bokaro Railway station, from where he will be taken to Gurugram's Medanta Hospital for further treatment of COVID-19, in Ranchi.

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Official residence of Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) Supremo Shibu Soren, in Ranchi. The former CM and his wife Rupi Soren tested positive for the coronavirus.

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Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren (R) gives a certificate to his father and Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) Chief Shibu Soren (L) after he won Rajya Sabha Election at Jharkhand Assembly, in Ranchi.

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Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) Supremo Shibu Soren (C) files nomination papers for Rajya Sabha Elections, scheduled to be held on March 26, 2020, at Jharkhand Assembly, in Ranchi.

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Congress MLA Badal Patralekh seeks blessings from JMM president Shibu Soren during an oath-taking ceremony at Raj Bhawan, in Ranchi.

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Newly sworn-in Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren with his father Sibu Soren, mother Rupi Soren, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, Rajasthan CM Ashok Gehlot, DMK leader MK Stalin, Left party leader D Raja, Sarad Yadav and other leaders joins hands during the oath taking ceremony at Morahabadi ground in Ranchi.

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Congress leader Rahul Gandhi meets with former Chief Minister of Jharkhand and JMM supremo Shibu Soren and his wife Rupi Soren during the swearing ceremony of Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren in Ranchi, Jharkhand.

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From 2nd left RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav, JMM Chief, Shibu Soren, JMM working president, Hemant Soren and Congress Jharkhand In-Charge, RPN Singh during Mahagatbandhan Meeting in Ranchi.

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Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) Executive President and Chief Minister designate Hemant Soren meet Jharkhand Governor Draupadi Murmu to stake claim to form government in the state, at Raj Bhawan in Ranchi, Jharkhand.

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Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) Executive President and Chief Minister designate Hemant Soren along with Mahagathbandhan leaders meet Jharkhand Governor Draupadi Murmu to stake claim to form government in the state, at Raj Bhawan in Ranchi, Jharkhand.

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Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) chief Shibu Soren meets with the newly elected party MLAs, at his residence in Ranchi.

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Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) Supremo Shibu Soren during a meeting with party MLA’s, in Ranchi, Jharkhand.

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Former Jharkhand Chief Minister and Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) chief Hemant Soren at an election campaign rally in support of the party candidate Sanjeev Sardar from Potka, ahead of the 2nd phase of Assembly elections, in Jamshedpur, Jharkhand.

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JMM Supremo Shibu Soren with former CM Hemant Soren (L) and other leaders releases their party menifesto for the Assembly elections, in Ranchi.

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Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) chief Shibu Soren gives blessings to the party's State Women President and candidate for Ranchi constituency Mahua Manjhi before she filed her nomination papers for Assembly elections in Ranchi

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Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) president Shibu Soren, Executive President Hemant Soren and other top office-bearers of the party are seen during a meeting for finalizing the candidate's list for the forthcoming state Assembly elections, at former's residence in Ranchi.

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Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) chief Shibu Soren, wife Rupi Soren, son Hemant Soren and other party leaders during the concluding session of 'Badlao Yatra' rally ahead of Jharkhand Assembly Election, at Harmu ground in Ranchi

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Jharkhand former chief minister and Mukti Morcha (JMM) party supremo Shibu Soren waves at party supporters at his residence, in Dumka district.

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Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) supremo Shibu Soren and Executive President Hemant Soren release the party's manifesto for the Lok Sabha elections, in Ranchi

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Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) Chief and candidate from Dumka parliamentary seat Shibu Soren files his nomination papers for Lok Sabha elections, in Dumka. His son and party's executive president Hemant Soren is also present.

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(L-R) Former Union Minister Subodh Kant Sahay, Congress MLA Alamgir Alam, Jharkhand Vikas Morcha (JVM) Chief Babulal Marandi, Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) Chief Shibu Soren, State Congress President Ajoy Kumar and JMM working President Hemant Soren joins hands at a press conference after announcing seat sharing pact of Mahagathbandhan in Jharkhand, in Ranchi.

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Jharkhand Mukti Morcha leader and lok sabha MP Shibu Soren outside Parliament during the budget session, in New Delhi.

Photo by Tribhuvan Tiwari/Outlook

Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) Chief Shibu Soren with his son and former chief minister Hemant Soren celebrates his 73rd Birthday, in Ranchi.

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Jharkhand Mukti Mukti Morcha (JMM) chief Shibu Soren cuts a huge cake as he celebrates his 72nd birthday, in Ranchi.

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Jharkhand Chief Minister Raghubar Das seeks blessings from Jharkhand Mukti Morcha Chief and former CM Shibu Soren, in Ranchi.

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Jharkhand DGP Rajeev Kumar (R) and JMM chief Shibu Soren pay tributes to the police and polling officials killed in a land mine blast by Maoists at Sikaripara in Dumka of Jharkhand.

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Only Guruji Many consider this to be JMM supremo Shibu Soren’s last election

Rajesh Kumar

Former Vice President of Tata Steel Neerup Mohanti offer sweets to Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) supremo Shibu Soren and his son Chief Minister Hemant Soren after joining the party in Ranchi, Jharkhand.

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All clean Dasari Narayana Rao (right) in 2006 with Manmohan Singh, Shibu Soren and A. Raja during the unveiling of the foundation stone for a Neyveli mine project

Jharkhnad Governor Syed Ahmed checks the letter of support submitted by JMM leader Hemant Soren (second left) along with JMM chief Shibu Soren and JPCC President Sukhdeo Bhagat to stake claim to form the government in the state, at Raj Bhavan in Ranchi.

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JMM chief Shibu Soren and his son & party leader Hemant Soren being garlanded by supporters in Ranchi.

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Jharkhand Mukti Morcha chief Shibu Soren with his MLAs during a meeting at Morahabadi in Ranchi.

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To the guv JMM MLAs offer support withdrawal letter

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JMM Supremo Shibu Soren along with Hemant Soren and other party MLAs handing over the letter of withdrawal of support to the Jharkhand's BJP government to Governor Syed Ahmed at Raj Bhawan in Ranchi.

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Jharkhand Chief Minister Arjun Munda along with two deputy Chief Minister Hemant Soren (R), Sudesh Mahato (L) and Jharkhand Coordination Committee Chairman Shibu Soren pays floral tribute at Birsa Munda's memorial in Ranchi.

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Illustration by Sandeep Adhwaryu

Jharkhand Chief Minister and JMM chief Shibu Soren and BJP national general secretary Arjun Munda along with other party members showing victory mark after both parties agreed to lead the government in the state for 28-month periods each, in Ranchi.

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After getting a nod from the leadership to go ahead with government formation in Jharkhand, senior BJP leader Arjun Munda tonight met Chief Minister Shibu Soren, but it appears that a consensus is not evolved to end the three-week-old political crisis in the state.

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Illustration by Sandeep Adhwaryu

JMM chief and Jharkhand Chief Minister Shibu Soren during a discussion with the party MLAs at his residence at Ranchi. JMM has asked BJP to share power with them in Jharkhand on 50:50 basis, two days after the saffron party said it would head the coalition for the rest of the tenure (four and half years) of the present house.

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BJP national general secretary Anant Kumar along with Hemant Soren, JMM leader and son of Jharkhand Chief Minister Shibu Soren talking to the media after meeting with BJP President Nitin Gadkari at his residence in New Delhi. Ending a fortnight-long stalemate, JMM and AJSU today announced support to a BJP-led government in Jharkhand for the remaining four-and-a-half year tenure of the state Assembly. Ending a fortnight-long stalemate, JMM and AJSU today announced support to a BJP-led government in Jharkhand for the remaining four-and-a-half year tenure of the state Assembly.

PTI Photo/Aman Sharma

Jharkhand Chief Minister Shibu Soren takes rest on a cot at his official residence in Ranchi. BJP's four-month honeymoon with Shibu Soren ended abruptly with the party withdrawing support to the JMM-led government, a day after the Jharkhand Chief Minister sided with the UPA in the Lok Sabha.

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Jharkhand CM Shibu Soren beats drum on the ocassion of Sarhul, a tribal festival, in Ranchi.

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Jharkhand Chief Minister Shibu Soren greets former Prime Minister and BJP veteran Atal Bihari Vajpayee at his residence in New Delhi.

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Workers of JMM and BJP celebrate after the Shibu Soren government won the trust vote in the Vidhan Sabha in Ranchi.

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The Jharkhand verdict threw up a hung house once again. And Shibu Soren was back as the king-maker. But the BJP which had shouted from the roof-tops about "tainted ministers" in UPA, demanding his sack, was not protesting about his corrupt, criminal or murderous past this time around. So far, that is because Soren has been hinting that he is open to negotiations.

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Jharkhand Mukti Morcha supremo Shibu Soren and his newly elected MLA son Hemant Soren flash a sign of victory in Ranchi.

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Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) supremo Shibu Soren spends a relaxed time in his garden at his residence in Bokaro, Jharkhand. JMM won 18 seats in assembly polls.

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Thursday 3 JuneSome 200 National Democratic Alliance MPs led by Leader of the Opposition L.K.Advani march towards the Rashtrapati Bhavan to submit a memorandum to the President demanding the removal of the 'tainted' ministers in the Manmohan Singh government, including RJD supremo Laloo Prasad Yadav. Mentioning specific charges against Yadav, Coal and Mines Minister Shibu Soren and Ministers of State Taslimuddin, Jai Prakash Yadav, M A A Fatimi and P C Gupta, the memorandum urged President Kalam to take up the issue with the Prime Minister and ensure that the ministers were out of the government 'in the larger interest of Parliamentary democracy, public interest, national security and norms of probity in public life.'

AP Photo/Manish Swarup

Saturday 24 JulyUnion Coal Minister Shibu Soren, who is reported 'missing' to evade an arrest warrant in a 30-year-old murder case, resigned for the Union Cabinet after Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's directive to him in the wake of disruption of Parliament by opposition on the issue. The tribal leader has been in hiding ever since the Jharkhand police tried to execute an arrest warrant issued by a Jamtara court against the JMM leader, who has been accused in a case of killing of 10 Muslims in what is called Chiruddih massacre 30 years ago. Soren is the first minister to resign from this government in such a controversy while demands for resignation of other Bihar Ministers, including Lalu Prasad, on account of their being chargesheeted in corruption cases have been rejected by the UPA government.

Friday 30 JulyJharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) leader Shibu Soren with his son Hemant Soren meets party workers at his residence in Ranchi. Resurfacing after more than ten days, the former Union Coal Minister claimed that he was never in hiding but was "interacting" with people in villages and the jungles of Jharkhand. Soren accused the BJP of hatching a conspiracy to create a Gujarat-like situation in Jharkhand before the Assembly elections by digging out a 30-year-old case against him but claimed that "he foiled their attempts". Soren later surrendered before the District and Sessions fast track court in Ranchi on 2 August on the directions of the Jharkhand High Court and is remanded to judicial custody till August 13.

AP Photo/Sasanka Sen

Saturday November 27The taint is back. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and newly 're-inducted' Union minister Shibu Soren greet each other at the swearing-in-ceremony at the Rashtrapati Bhawan in New Delhi. 62-year old Soren had to resign his Coal and Mines portfolio, barely a couple of months after being sworn in, in the wake of an arrest warrant issued against him in connection with the 1975 Chirudih massacre in Jamtara in Jharkhand. He had to spend a month in judicial remand, but since his bail on September 8, there had been pressure for his reinduction. And the good doctor saw nothing wrong in taking him back, on the specious plea that the reason why he left the government "no longer exists". Mr Taslimuddin and others have some more distinguished company.

AP Photo/Manish Swarup

A seven-member UPA ministry headed by JMM chief Shibu Soren was today sworn in Jharkhand following Governor Sibtey Razi's controversial decision to invite him to form the government, triggering a storm of protests by the BJP-led NDA which dubbed it a "constitutional outrage." Rebel JMM leader Stephen Marandi, who had revolted against the 63-year-old Soren, was sworn in as Deputy Chief Minister. Soren, who earlier resigned from the Union Cabinet, is the third Chief Minister of Jharkhand after Babulal Marandi and Arjun Munda. Earlier, five Independent MLAs had met the Governor to pledge support to NDA which had submitted a list of 41 MLAs. The Governor has asked Soren to prove his majority on the floor of the 81-member Assembly by March 21.

AP FILE

Wednesday 2 March After the outrage in Goa came the controversial decision of the Jharkhand governor who swore in a seven-member UPA ministry headed by JMM chief Shibu Soren. Rebel JMM leader Stephen Marandi, who had earlier revolted against the 63-year-old Soren, and fought and won elections as a rebel, along with two other MLAs, was sworn in as Deputy Chief Minister. This came soon after the NDA had paraded 41 members in front of the governor, including five Independent MLAs who had pledged it support. The governor's action evoked a national protest cutting across party and ideological lines and the governor was controversially described as a "Supari killer" by one newspaper editor.

Five Independent MLAs of Jharkhand raise their hands showing support to the National Democratic Alliance as BJP president L.K.Advani looks on outside the Rashtrapati Bhavan in New Delhi. The NDA today paraded 41 MLAs to prove its majority in the 81-member State Assembly before President A P J Abdul Kalam who assured them that he will do whatever he can after his meeting with Governor Sibtey Razi tomorrow. President Kalam has summoned the Governor for "discussions" over his controversial decision yesterday to invite Shibu Soren to form a government.

AP Photo/Manish Swarup

Jharkhand Chief Minister Shibu Soren flashes the victory sign at the Patna airport. Soren cancelled his programme to go to Delhi where he was to meet President A P J Abdul Kalam and decided to return to Ranchi after the Supreme Court ordered floor test in the state Assembly on March 11, instead of March 15, to determine who - UPA's nominee Soren or NDA's Arjun Munda - commands majority in the House. Hearing a petition filed by Arjun Munda to challenge Soren's appointment as the CM, a three-judge Bench said "If what is stated in the petition filed by Munda is true, then it is a total fraud on the Constitution." Soren has expressed confidence that he will win the trust vote and charged the NDA with holding captive three Independent MLAs who had pledged support to UPA alliance in the crucial trial of strength.

AP Photo/Vikram Kumar

Saturday 12 MarchThe ten-day political drama in Jharkhand came to an end after Chief Minister Shibu Soren bowed out of office after failing to prove his majority in the state Assembly as directed by the Supreme Court. Putting up a last-minute resistance before Governor Sibtey Razi, who called him to quit, Soren refused to tender his resignation but was later "persuaded" to resign after Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's late night "advice". Arjun Munda was later sworn-in as the CM for the second time along with five "abducted" independent MLAs who were sworn in as ministers.

Friday 11 MarchThe Prime Minister is invisible, charged the leader of the opposition on Thursday, as the authority of his office was not being felt. The PM countered that he should not be judged by his visibility but the work done by him. Finally, after the PM stepped in to solve the Jharkhand imbroglio by asking Shibu Soren to resign on late Friday night. Mr Advani conceded that he was now able to see glimpses of the PM, even though he stepped in only because "he had no other choice and it was a face-saving and crisis management exercise for the Congress."

AP FILE

January 28: Turbulent Times A dramatic coup by JD(S) leader H.D. Kumaraswamy led to the fall of the Dharam Singh government in Bangalore. Hardly had the JD(S)-BJP government settled down than the Opposition alleged that Kumaraswamy had taken a bribe of Rs 150 crore from the mine owners of Bellary.

Hung assemblies, razor-thin majorities, cobbling alliances with political rivals—India’s political class continued to surprise. Surpassing Kumaraswamy in political chicanery was Madhu Koda, an independent legislator from Jharkhand who became CM later in the year in September. Koda and two other independents withdrew support from the NDA government, bagged the support of Laloo Prasad Yadav, Shibu Soren, and created history. An incredible feat for an independent MLA. And to think Koda won his political spurs in the RSS. 

December 18: Lalu On The Front Foot While middle-class India backed by media and the power of SMSs, emails and blogs celebrated the conviction of Shibu Soren, Navjot Singh Siddhu, Manu Sharma, Santosh Singh, Vikas Yadav et al, there was one man who was left gleeful at the end — Lalu Yadav was acquitted by Patna court in a seven-year-old  disproportionate assets case. UPA allies sighed with relief, as his conviction would have caused major problems for the coalition government. In between, there were other reasons to be gleeful for the leader of the "orizanal" (as against regional) party from Bihar. The turnaround of the Indian Railways under his watch also brought forth invites from IIM (A) for a lecture, and a batch of students from Harvard and Wharton business schools. Meanwhile, Ram Jethmalani, unfazed by the ignominy of his legal shenanigans to save Manu Sharma, was active as ever during his intervention in the question hour in the Rajya Sabha The Law Minister Hansraj Bhardwaj was answering supplementary questions regarding the appointment of judges to fill existing vacancies when Jethmalani popped up to ask whether the Law Minister would devise a system whereby ‘good judges like Muni Lal Paswan can be rewarded for their good work.’ Of course, Bhardwaj sidestepped the query, but the import of the remarks was not lost on anyone. Paswan, the CBI Special Judge in Patna, had only a few days ago acquitted the Railway Minister Laloo Yadav and his wife, Rabri Devi, in the disproportionate assets case. More controversially, Paswan had replaced the earlier judge hearing the case against the Yadav couple and the change was unsuccessfully challenged in the Supreme Court.

Shibu Soren
More epic stuff. Tribal hero, man behind the Jharkhand movement, makes history for being the first sitting Union minister to be given a life sentence. For conspiring to murder his private secretary in 1994.

Sandeep Adhwaryu

Aug 27, 2008
He is back. JMM chief Shibu Soren was sworn in as Jharkhand chief minister. Once again. The photo shows the celebrations when the deal was sealed. Eleven ministers also took oath along with Mr Soren. All the Independents, except former CM Madhu Koda and Chandra Prakash Chaudhary have been retained in the new ministry. The new state cabinet has convened a special assembly session on August 29 to prove majority.  Popularly known as 'Guruji'  Soren has faced criminal cases forcing him twice to step down as union minister during the UPA rule under Manmohan Singh. He has been acquitted in the 1975 Chirrudih massacre case and also in the murder of former personal secretary Shashinath for which he served a prison term from December 2006 to August 2007. His being back in the saddle is seen as a quid pro quo for his support to Manmohan Singh government in the July 22 trust vote. 

PTI

Sunday August 17, 2008 
The price of July 22 trust vote! The 23-month-old Madhu Koda-led coalition government in Jharkhand was reduced to a minority on August 16 after the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) withdrew its support, in pursuit of its agenda to get Mr. Koda replaced by its supremo Shibu Soren. Claiming that all UPA allies were with him, a confident JMM supremo Shibu Soren said that 'sons of the soil' would support him during the August 25 trust vote in Jharkhand assembly and dismissed any talks with BJP or the NDA to enlist their support. He termed as 'baseless' earlier reports that NDA had offered to make him the chief minister of Jharkhand if the JMM voted against the UPA in the July 22 trust vote in Parliament.

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Funny, isn't it? The same people who were responsible for saving the PV Narasimha Rao government in 1993 remained in the thick of things this time around too. Their votes were invaluable, and they were wooed by both the camps. After being expelled from the union council, Shibu Soren had never really given up hope for regaining his favourite coal ministry, and he seems all set to be sworn in again. He was only being modest when he said: "We did not demand more than what is our right. We have demanded only one MoS besides the Union Coal Ministry, which I earlier held."

PTI Photo by Kamal Singh

Nine months after he was sentenced for life in the 14-year-old murder case of his private secretary Shashi Nath Jha, former Union Minister and JMM leader Shibu Soren was today acquitted by the Delhi High Court which held that CBI "miserably" failed to prove its case. Observing that there was no evidence to show that the body exhumed from a farmhouse on the outskirts of Ranchi was that of Jha and that Soren had any motive to have the victim eliminated, Justices R S Sodhi and H R Malhotra ordered that "Soren and four others to be released forthwith if they are not wanted in any other case". Hours after the verdict, the Centre welcomed the acquittal of Soren but side-stepped queries on whether he would be reinstated in the Cabinet. Soren, 62, had to quit as Union Coal Minister following his conviction on November 28, 2006 and was shifted from Tihar Jail to Dumka prison in Jharkhand.

Rashtriya Janata Dal MP, Pappu Yadav, currently lodged in Delhi's Tihar jail, leaves the polling booth on a wheel chair after casting his vote for the Presidential elections at Parliament House in New Delhi. Voting in one of the most bitterly contested Presidential elections that is set to throw up the country's first woman President ended today, with Third Front constituents AIADMK and MDMK making a U-turn on the grouping's decision to abstain and dissident BJP MLAs in Gujarat voting for UPA-Left nominee Patil. Dissidents in the INLD in Rajasthan, Samajwadi Party in Bihar and Madhya Pradesh and TDP in Andhra Pradesh -- all members of the Third Front -- also went against the decision to abstain. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi were among the first to cast their votes in the polls, in which Patil has a clear edge over NDA-backed Independent candidate Bhairon Singh Shekhawat. The elections also saw four jailed MPs -- Shibu Soren (JMM), Mohd Shahabuddin (RJD), Babubhai Katara (BJP) and Pappu Yadav (RJD) -- exercising their franchise. A total of 682 of 770 MPs voted, marking a turnout of 88.5 per cent, while 91 per cent of MLAs made it to polling booths. As many as 3,755 MLAs out of 4,170 voted, with seven states recording 100 per cent polling.

AP Photo/Mustafa Quraishi

Tuesday 5 December
Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) party workers hold a demonstration to protest against the life imprisonment awarded to their leader and party chief Shibu Soren in Ranchi, Jharkhand. Earning a dubious first of its kind at the national level, the former Union Minister was sentenced to life imprisonment in the Shashi nath Jha murder case after the CBI made a strong plea for awarding him capital punishment. The 62-year-old tribal leader from Jharkhand, who was forced to quit as Coal Minister in the Manmohan Singh government last week on his conviction, was also fined a sum of Rs five lakhs which would go to the mother and two daughters of the victim. Four others convicted in the case were also awarded life sentence by Additional Sessions Judge B R Kedia who imposed a lesser fine of Rs 15,000 each.

AP Photo/ Sasanka Sen

Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) party workers hold a demonstration to protest against the life imprisonment awarded to their leader and party chief Shibu Soren in Ranchi, Jharkhand. Earning a dubious first of its kind at the national level, the former Union Minister was today sentenced to life imprisonment in the Shashi nath Jha murder case after the CBI made a strong plea for awarding him capital punishment. The 62-year-old tribal leader from Jharkhand, who was forced to quit as Coal Minister in the Manmohan Singh government last week on his conviction, was also fined a sum of Rs five lakhs which would go to the mother and two daughters of the victim. Four others convicted in the case were also awarded life sentence by Additional Sessions Judge B R Kedia who imposed a lesser fine of Rs 15,000 each.

AP Photo/ Sasanka Sen

Tuesday 28 November
The tainted ministers were back in limelight. In the first such conviction of a union minister in a murder case, union coal Minister and JMM leader Shibu Soren was convicted by a Delhi court after it held him and four other associates guilty of conspiracy in the kidnapping and murder of his former private secretary Shashi Nath Jha twelve years ago. Immediately after the verdict, the CBI took the 62-year-old Soren, who was present in court, into custody. While the CBI is planning to plead for death penalty for the accused, the hearing on quantum of sentence have been delayed as Soren has repeatedly avoided appearing the court on medical pretexts. Predictably, the decision has once again brought into spotlight the serious issue of criminalisation of politics. Soren finally resigned from the cabinet on the request of the Prime Minister.

AP Photo

In the first such conviction of a Union Minister in a murder case, Union Coal Minister and JMM leader Shibu Soren was today convicted by a Delhi court after it held him guilty of conspiracy in the kidnapping and murder of his former private secretary Shashi Nath Jha twelve years ago. Additional Sessions Judge B R Kedia also convicted four others in the case. Jha was abducted from Dhaula Kuan in New Delhi on May 22, 1994 and police found his body in a village near Ranchi in 1998. The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) had filed a charge-sheet against Soren and others on 10 November, 1998 alleging that Jha was murdered because he had knowledge of the bribe payment to four former JMM MPs who had voted against the no-confidence motion against the P V Narasimha Rao government in July 1993. Immediately after the verdict, the CBI took the 62-year-old Soren, who was present in court, into custody. The quantum of sentence will be decided after arguments for which hearing has been fixed on November 30. The punishment under these sections ranges from life imprisonment to death penalty. Taking a serious note of the development, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh asked Soren to resign.

AP Photo

Independent MLA Madhu Koda submits his stake to form the government to Governor Syed Sibte Razi, in Ranchi, Jharkhand. Koda was today poised to head an UPA government after Chief Minister Arjun Munda quit without facing the trial of strength in the Assembly following withdrawal of support by four MLAs with whose backing he had formed the ministry 18 months ago. Soon after Munda resigned in the face of the legislative arithmetic heavily stacked against him, the 35-year-old Koda, accompanied by RJD chief and Railway Minister Lalu Prasad and JMM chief and Coal Minister Shibu Soren, met the Governor and staked claim to form government submitting a list of 43 MLAs in the 81-member House. Assembly speaker Inder Singh Namdhari, who had kept pending his verdict on the disqualification petitions of three MLAs, including Koda, has also resigned saying "As I was an NDA candidate in the Speaker's post, I am resigning on moral grounds."

AP Photo/Sasanka Sen

Thursday 7 September
Rescuers bring out the bodies of miners killed in an explosion in a coalmine, bundled in carts in Bhatdih, about 150 kilometers west of Ranchi, Jharkhand. Fifty miners, trapped in a 460 metre-deep coal mine of the state-owned Bharat Coking Coal Ltd. (BCCL) died due to inhalation of carbon monoxide following an underground explosion. As many as 57 miners were in the mine when a blast to open up a new mining area caused the roof to collapse, releasing deadly methane gas. While seven miners managed to come out, the rest were trapped in the last of the 18-level mine. Union coal minister Shibu Soren has announced compensation of Rs three lakh for each of the families of the dead workers and a job for their next of kin and also ordered a departmental inquiry into the accident.

AP Photo/Sasanka Sen

Tuesday 5 September
Jharkhand Chief Minister Arjun Munda beats a traditional drum to celebrate Karma Puja, a tribal festival, in Ranchi. The BJP-led coalition government in Jharkand was reduced to a minority after four ministers resigned and withdrew support from the 18 -month old government. The ministers—Enos Ekka, Harinarayan Rai and Madhu Kora (all Independents)—and Kamlesh Singh (NCP), whose support was crucial during the formation of the government, have now extended support to the UPA. Governor Syed Sibtey Razi, who earned the title of 'contract killer' for his dubious role in formation of short-lived Shibu Soren-led UPA government in March 2005, has asked Arjun Munda to prove his majority on the floor of the House by September 14 and has also asked Speaker Inder Singh Namdhari to arrange for video-recording and direct telecast by electronic media of the trust vote. The Speaker has now slapped disqualification notices on the three independent MLAs.

AP Photo/Sasanka Sen

Sunday 29 January
The pipe-line would perhaps remain a pipe-dream? Mani Shankar Aiyar was one of the most prominent cabinet ministers who despite stellar performance could be seen to have been demoted (largely because of American pressure) by the much-awaited and ballyhooed cabinet reshuffle that in the end turned out to primarily be a Congress affair, with Shibu Soren of the JMM and Prem Gupta of the RJD being the only non-Congress inclusions in the reshuffle. Altogether 22 ministers were administered oath of office and secrecy at the Rastrapati Bhavan in the first major reshuffle-cum-expansion in the one-and-a-half year-old UPA government, taking its existing strength to 79 .

AP Photo/Manish Swarup