Meet the man of the moment Hemant Soren, the humble-looking guy next door, who inherited his father’s fighting spirit

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Shahnawaz Akhtar
Shahnawaz Akhtarhttp://shahnawazakhtar.com/
is Founder of eNewsroom. He loves doing human interest, political and environment related stories.

Ranchi: Hemant Soren, present Chief Minister-designate, executive president of Jharkhand Mukti Morcha describes himself as a disciple of Birsa Munda and Baba Saheb, a proud father and a concerned citizen on Twitter.

And perhaps it was these traits that helped Soren junior, to pitchfork himself as for Chief Minister Raghubar Das’s key challenger during the recently concluded Jharkhand Assembly election.

Soren, while campaigning during Assembly Polls, often shared from the podium, about how touring thrice across the state made him both see and understand that suffering of the common man during the Raghubar Das led Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) regime.

The CM designate does have a point, as it was one of these Yatras – the Sangharsh Yatra that established Hemant as the pan-Jharkhand face for CM’s post. The yatras, through its night chaupals and public meeting played a critical role in projecting him as the pan-Jharkhand face, who would be there not just for the tribals but for all and make the election emerge as a battle between arrogance and humility, snobbish attitude and friendliness and above all presenting a pro-people CM figure which was in contrast with the anti-people attitude of the BJP government.

Perhaps, the sober, humble and the much approachable image of the 44-year-old leader, made him emerge as not just the challenger and star campaigner for both the party and the gatbandhan but also as a successful candidate. Hemat Soren, contested from two seats and won both.

It was around the Sangharsh Yatra in January this year that then Leader of Opposition agreed for a one on one interview to eNewsroom. Despite being exhausted after back to back meetings and walks, Hemant gave an interview at length, which was a sharp contrast to the attitude of former CM Das, who when questioned about the amendments made in the Chota Nagpur Tenancy (CNT) and Santhan Pargana Tenancy (SPT) Act, by me during a press briefing, he had retorted, “Do you people have no other work to do?” It was only after being reminded that it was the job of a journalist to question that he replied to the question.

Perhaps, the sober, humble and the much approachable image of the 44-year-old leader, made him emerge as not just the challenger and star campaigner for both the party and the gatbandhan but also as a successful candidate. Hemat Soren, contested from two seats and won both.

After the Sangharsh Yatra, came the Badlav Yatra, where Hemant while addressing public meetings would provide solutions and alternatives to the existing issue which was being faced by the masses. During the assembly polls, he did 147 rallies in a month or so. To save time, he used to choose places very close to a helipad to address people.

hemant soren chief minister jharkhand jmm shibu soren gathbandhan
CM designate Hemant Soren riding bicycle at his residence

During his campaign in Giridih, he addressed the rally alone, with the party candidate, Sudivya Kumar Sonu not being able to remain present with him. Sonu, around that time, was addressing another rally along with JMM president Shibu Soren.

Those knowing Hemant would agree that the political journey has not been that easy. Hemant, an engineering student from Birla Institute of Technology (BIT) Mesra, had no intention of being the political successor of Shibu Soren, the man responsible for carving out Jharkhand from Bihar. The sudden death of Durga Soren made him step in.

However, those knowing the Sorens will agree that Hemant inherited his father’s fighting spirit and indomitable character. The political journey for the family began, when Shibu’s father, Sobaran Soren, was killed by money lenders for having initiated a movement against moneylenders and landlords, who exploited tribal farmers. It has taken at least five decades for the family to reach the present position.

The fact that previous night Hemant tweeted, “On my way back to Ranchi from Delhi yesterday late in the night I remembered meeting with Santoshi’s mother and her listless eyes speaking about how her daughter dies saying bhat bhat, remembered the countless youth who asked me why inspite of studying hard they couldn’t get (jobs),” keeps the hopes alive of many who voted him to power.

Even till date, the Sorens lead a simple lifestyle. A photograph of Hemant, along with his wife Kalpana in their earthy kitchen that went viral is a reflection that appealed to many. The CM designate loves cycling and was a sportsman too, till he took the political plunge. His political career till date has been free of any major controversies, during which has served as both – Chief Minister and Rajya Sabha member too.

The rise of Soren junior depicts his evolution as a seasoned politician, who has managed to keep the alliance together and secure a higher number of seats than the required 41 in Jharkhand Assembly. He has strategically kept Jharkhand Vikash Morcha (JVM) in his fold. When he met JVM’s chief Babulal Marandi, he touched his feet and took his blessings, following which Marandi has even announced unconditional support to the Mahagatbandhan alliance.

The fact that previous night Hemant tweeted, “On my way back to Ranchi from Delhi yesterday late in the night I remembered meeting with Santoshi’s mother and her listless eyes speaking about how her daughter dies saying bhat bhat, remembered the countless youth who asked me why inspite of studying hard they couldn’t get (jobs),” keeps the hopes alive of many who voted him to power.

Shahnawaz Akhtar
Shahnawaz Akhtarhttp://shahnawazakhtar.com/
is Founder of eNewsroom. He loves doing human interest, political and environment related stories.

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