The Jharkhand High Court on Friday said that two pleas seeking inquiry against Chief Minister Hemant Soren in cases related to irregularities in mining leases and shell companies are maintainable, the Hindustan Times reported.

The first plea is related to the stone mining lease granted by Soren to himself in 2021. He surrendered the lease on February 4. In the second plea, the petitioner has alleged that Soren and his family members have stored unaccounted money in shell companies.

Both the pleas were filed by Right To Information activist Shiv Kumar Sharma. He has asked for inquiries by the Central Bureau Investigation and the Enforcement Directorate against Soren. Sharma has also sought directions to disqualify Soren – who handles the mining department – from the state Assembly.

“Stating that the petitions are maintainable, the bench has admitted our petitions setting aside the arguments put forth by the counsels of the respondents,” said Rajiv Kumar, counsel for petitioner Shiv Shankar Sharma on Friday.

The High Court passed two interim orders on May 13 and 19 after hearing the petition about shell companies. The Jharkhand government had moved the Supreme Court after the High Court, on May 13, accepted documents submitted by the Enforcement Directorate in a sealed cover despite the state’s objections.

On May 24, the Supreme Court asked the Jharkhand High Court to decide on the maintainability of Sharma’s pleas.

The vacation bench of Justices DY Chandrachud and Bela M Trivedi noted that the High Court order had also mentioned that it will first hear objections to the maintainability of the petition before proceeding with the merits of the case.

On June 3, Amritansh Vats, who is assisting Soren’s counsel Mukul Rohtagi, said that the petitioner had filed a case because he had personal enmity with the chief minister’s family, The New Indian Express reported.

The case will now be heard on June 10.