In an unprecedented turn of events, six MLAs from Jharkhand Vikas Morcha (Prajatantrik) joined the BJP on Wednesday.
According to a PTI report, the move comes just a day after they filed a petition to the Speaker asking for permission to sit in the state Assembly alongside the ruling BJP-led coalition members.
"Naveen Jaiswal (Hatia), Amar Kumar Bauri (Chandankiyari), Ganesh Ganju (Simeria), Alok Kumar Chourasia (Daltonganj), Ranjit Singh (Sarath) and Janki Yadav (Barkatha) joined the party at Jharkhand Bhavan in Delhi today," BJP's state unit spokesman Pradip Sinha was quoted as saying.
The six MLAs, in the presence of Jharkhand Chief Minister Raghuvar Das and other senior BJP leaders, entered the Saffron party.
The coalition government in Jharkhand had 37 BJP members earlier and with the help of a few AJSU members, an alliance was formed. Now with the new entrants, the coalition has 48 members; thereby becoming dominant in the 81-member Assembly.
The move raised various questions, with opposition parties claiming that BJP's motive was to create a divide between other parties.
Manwhile, Jharkhand's Chief Minister said: "I am not interested in breaking but connecting others. Those who want to support the BJP government in carrying out the development of the state are welcome."
JVM chief and former Chief Minister Babulal Marandi was unhappy with the departure of the six MLAs. He told the media that the Saffron party was trying to filch members from his party as well as the Congress party to strengthen their position in the allied government.
Marandi had suspended Jaiswal, Bauri, Chourasia and Ganju from JVM on charges of suspected anti-party activities on Monday.
Marandi had led the first BJP-led NDA government after Jharkhand attained its statehood. However, he walked out of the Saffron party a few years ago and formed the JVM(P) along with some colleagues.
Jharkhand, which was carved out of Bihar in 2000, never really had a stable regime before the formation of the 10th government on 28 December, last year.
Recently, efforts to merge both the BJP and the JVM(P) were being made so that the state is ruled by a stronger government; but Marandi flatly declined the proposal.