The three seats of Santhal Pargana—Dumka, Rajmahal and Godda go to poll in the last phase of election (May 19). Both the BJP and Grand Alliance are making last ditch efforts campaigning extensively in these three seats. Out of three seats—JMM holds Dumka and Rajmahal—both seats reserved for tribals, while BJP Nishikant Dubey is sitting MP from Godda.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s rally in Godda on May 15, makes the contest interesting as Santhal gears up for final battle.
In Godda, the saffron party has once again reposed faith on its sitting MP Nishikant Dubey, who had represented the seat twice. Pitted against Dubey is Grand Alliance supported JVM candidate Pradeep Yadav.
After Chatra, Godda was the seat, which witnessed much infighting between grand alliance partners.
As per the seat sharing arrangement, the Godda seat was given to JVM, but the senior Congress leader Furqan Ansari too was one of the strong claimants of the seat.
The claims made by two Grand Alliance partners lead to exchange of war of words between JVM and Congress.
However, at last moment, Furqan keeping the interest of Grand Alliance decided to leave the seat for Yadav. Last week, senior Congressman and leader of opposition in Rajya Sabha, Ghulam Nabi Azad also campaigned for Yadav in Godda.
Godda has remained Saffron bastions as BJP has represented the seat for maximum times in past three decades.
The BJP’s victory foundation in Godda was laid by Janardhan Yadav in 1989, however, non-BJP MPs Suraj Mandal and Furqan Ansari too had represented the seat.
Godda Lok Sabha seat comprises six assembly segments—Godda, Mahagama, Deoghar, Madhupur, Poreyahat and Jarmundi. Out of these six assembly seats—four Godda, Mahagama, Deoghar and Madhupur are represented by BJP, while from Poreyahat JVM Pradeep Yadav is MLA.
In Dumka the fight is between Guru and his disciple. JMM strongman Shibu Soren who had represented the seat for eight times will make history in State if he reaches Lok Sabha for ninth times. Pitted against, Shibu Soren is Sunil Soren who had learnt the political nitty-gritty from Shibu, but later switch side to BJP.
It is for third time that both Shibu and Sunil are face to face in Dumka. However, in last two elections, Sunil Soren had to face defeat on the hands of Shibu.
The BJP with an attempt to break JMM stronghold had been working hard and in this connection Chief Minister Raghubar Das had visited the areas several times. Also, Chief Minister Das chose to launch various government events and programme from the tribal district.
The Dumka parliamentary seat comprises six seats, two are held by BJP (Dumka and Sarath), while JMM has MLA in Shikaripara, Jama and Nala. One seat Jamtara is held by Congress.
Sources said that in this seat, tribal plays a decisive role. The JMM banks on Shibu, while BJP rely on Modi magic.
Rajmahal Lok Sabha constituency which borders Dumka too is considered as JMM bastion.
The tribal dominated Lok Sabha seat has strong influence of JMM chief Shibu Soren and for tribals of the area there is no other leader than Shibu.
In Rajmahal the main contest is between BJP’s Hemlal Murmu and JMM sitting MP Vijay Hansdak. In 2014 election, JMM Vijay Hansdak defeated BJP Hemlal Murmu despite Modi wave.
The seat though is considered as JMM bastion, on several occasions, BJP had broken JMM wall as its MP represented the seat in 1989 and 2009.
Like others Lok Sabha seats of Santhal in Rajmhal too Shibu’s magic works. However, the BJP to regain the seat has been working hard starting up various welfare schemes along with boosting the infrastructure of the region.
In 2017, Prime Minister Modi laid the foundation stone for a multi-modal terminal in Sahibganj.
The foundation stone was also laid for four lane bridge on the Ganga river in Sahibganj district of Jharkhand. The bridge will connect Sahibganj to Manihari in Katihar district of Bihar.
The Lok Sabha seat comprises six assembly segments out of which two (Rajmahal and Borio) are held by BJP while in rest four seats three are held by JMM while from Pakur Congress Alamgir Alam is party MLA.