Hemant Soren’s initial response after ED arrest: “It’s a break.”

Jharkhand’s youngest chief minister, Hemant Soren, resigned from his position on Wednesday and was immediately arrested by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in connection with a land fraud case. Hemant Soren, the son of Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) leader Shibu Soren, named senior JMM leader Champai Soren as his successor. Following his arrest, Hemant Soren shared a poem in Hindi on X, stating, “It’s a break. Life is a great battle, I have fought every moment, I will fight every moment but I will not beg for compromise.”

“I will not give up in vain… I will not accept defeat… Jai Jharkhand!” he added.

Hemant Soren’s political career has been eventful, starting from taking charge as Jharkhand’s youngest chief minister at the age of 38. Initially, he was not the first choice of his father, Shibu Soren, to inherit his political legacy. However, Hemant was groomed in politics after his elder brother Durga’s untimely death in 2009.

Born on August 10, 1975, in Nemra village near Hazaribag, Hemant attended Patna High School for his intermediate education and later joined Birla Institute of Technology, Mesra in Ranchi, although he dropped out. He is known for his love of badminton, bicycles, and books, and he is married to Kalpana with whom he has two children.

In 2009, Hemant made his debut as a Rajya Sabha member. The following year, he resigned from the Upper House of Parliament to become the deputy chief minister in the BJP-led Arjun Munda government. However, the BJP-JMM government collapsed two years later, leading to the imposition of president’s rule in the state.

In 2013, Hemant Soren became the youngest chief minister of Jharkhand, with the support of the Congress and the RJD. His tenure as CM was short-lived as the BJP came to power in 2014, with Raghubar Das becoming the chief minister. Hemant then became the leader of the opposition.

In 2019, with the support of his allies Congress and RJD, Hemant Soren regained power, and his party, JMM, won 30 assembly seats, the highest tally ever in the 81-member House.

During his political rise, Soren managed to sideline senior JMM leaders such as Stephen Marandi, Simon Marandi, and Hemlal Murmu, leading them to leave the party. While Murmu and Simon Marandi joined the BJP, Stephen Marandi formed a party along with the first BJP chief minister of the state, Babulal Marandi. Stephen later returned to the JMM, accepting Soren as the party’s leader.

Soren’s tenure as Chief Minister has faced challenges. In 2022, he faced the possibility of disqualification as an MLA, which would have resulted in him losing the CM’s post, due to allegations of a mining lease being renewed for him after he became the chief minister. That same year, three Congress MLAs from the state were caught with nearly ₹49 lakh in cash in West Bengal, leading the Soren-led ruling coalition to claim that it was an attempt by the BJP to topple the government.

Despite these challenges, Soren has established himself as a strong voice for the state’s dominant tribal community. He has implemented initiatives such as “Apke Adhikar, Apki Sarkar, Apke Dwar” to ensure doorstep delivery of services and expanded the state government’s pension scheme. Social welfare has been a hallmark of his regime. Additionally, he has advocated for the economic benefits of mining activities reaching the tribal communities in the state.

Hemant Soren, the youngest chief minister of Jharkhand, has resigned from his post and was immediately arrested by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in a land fraud case. He named Champai Soren as his successor. Hemant Soren shared a poem in Hindi on X after being taken into custody, expressing his determination not to give up. He had a varied career, becoming chief minister in 2013 with the support of Congress and RJD, but his tenure was short-lived as the BJP took power in 2014. He regained power in 2019 with his party, JMM, winning the highest number of seats. Soren faced challenges during his tenure, including the potential disqualification as an MLA and allegations of a BJP-led attempt to topple his government. He focused on social welfare and economic benefits for the tribal community during his time as chief minister.

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