Dumka Lok Sabha election: JMM stronghold is now facing ‘Soren vs Soren’ battle; voting on June 1

  • Riding on anti-incumbency, JMM has fielded Nalin Soren, an MLA from Shikaripara, against Sita Soren – daughter-in-law of JMM patriarch Shibu Soren.

Livemint
Updated30 May 2024
Sita Soren, a long-time member of the JMM and a three-time Member of the Legislative Assembly, joined the BJP in March.
Sita Soren, a long-time member of the JMM and a three-time Member of the Legislative Assembly, joined the BJP in March.(HT_PRINT)

Dumka constituency in Jharkhand is gearing up for a Soren vs Soren battle which will be fought on June 1, in the seventh and last phase of the Lok Sabha elections 2024. The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has fielded Sita Soren – daughter-in-law of Shibu Soren – while Nalin Soren, a Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) veteran and six-time MLA, is contesting against her.

Amid turmoil within the Soren family in recent years, the unexpected move of Sita Soren joining the BJP to challenge her own family came as a surprise.

Sita Soren, a long-time member of the JMM and a three-time Member of the Legislative Assembly (MLA), joined the BJP in March. Joining the saffron party, Sita Soren said she was "neglected by the JMM" and was in "isolation" after the death of her husband Durga Soren in 2009.

Sita Soren said, “After the demise of my husband Durga Soren, a prominent figure in the Jharkhand movement, me and my family have endured ongoing neglect. We have felt isolated by both the party and family members, which has been deeply distressing.”

It is also said that despite her winning elections, Sita Soren was not included in the JMM-led Jharkhand cabinet. Durga Soren was always believed to lead the JMM, but his death in 2009 made way for Hemant to take over – something he didn't want to do. In 2019, Hemant Soren revealed that he took politics seriously after his brother's death.

“I became a serious politician only after the untimely death of my elder brother, Durga, in 2009,” said Hemant Soren, who wanted to set up his own architectural firm.

Dumka, where Shibu Soren won eight times, was once a traditional seat of the JMM. In the 2019 elections, the BJP's Sunil Soren secured victory over Shibu Soren by a margin of 47,590 votes. Contrary to expectations, Hemant Soren opted not to contest from the Dumka Lok Sabha seat, thereby averting a family conflict that had the potential to go worse.

Riding on the anti-incumbency wave, the JMM has fielded Nalin Soren, who is an MLA from Shikaripara. He has won the Assembly segment seven times in a row. Sita Soren will be facing a significant test of her reputation following her switch from the JMM to the BJP.

In the final phase of the Lok Sabha election, polling will take place in Rajmahal, Dumka, and Godda Lok Sabha seats of Jharkhand on June 1. The counting of votes polled in the Lok Sabha elections 2024 will be held on June 4.

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HomeElectionsDumka Lok Sabha election: JMM stronghold is now facing ‘Soren vs Soren’ battle; voting on June 1

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