GUWAHATI: Exodus from ruling Congress continues in poll-bound Manipur, with two more party MLAs, Nimcha Kipgen and V Valte, quitting. The two are likely to join BJP.
With the resignation, the strength of Congress has gone down to 45 seats in the 60-member House.
Last year, three veteran Congress heavyweights N Biren, Y Erabot and Francis Ngajokpa had resigned and joined the BJP.
Meanwhile, the United Naga Council, which has clamped economic blockade on two highways since November 1, has decided to boycott Republic Day celebration in the seven newly created districtsThe next round of tripartite talk between the Ministry of Home Affairs, UNC and Manipur government is likely to be held after Republic Day in New Delhi.
The tripartite talk was earlier scheduled to be held at Imphal on January 23. But the venue has been shifted to Delhi for UNC has reservation in attending meeting in Imphal.
Union home minister Rajnath Singh held meeting with UNC functionaries and Manipur chief minister Okram Ibobi Singh last week in New Delhi to broker peace, however, UNC is reluctant to lift the blockade.
BJP released its first list of 31 candidates for the Manipur assembly elections on March 4 and March 8.
The first list includes Chaoba Singh, convener of election management committee, who will contest from Nambol seat.
Manipur Pradesh Congress Committee (MPCC) vice-president and spokesperson, Nongthombam Biren Singh will contest from Heingang seat. Former minister and detractor of chief minister Okram Ibobi Singh, Yumkham Erabot Singh, will contest from Wangkhei assembly seat.
Veteran BJP leader O Joy Singh will contest from Langthabal while young leader, Biswajit Singh will contest from Thongju. Central Election Committee of BJP met in New Delhi on Monday to finalise the list of candidates. The meeting was presided over by party President Amit Shah, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and senior cabinet ministers attended the meeting.
The second last is expected to be finalised shortly. Manipur polls for the 60-member house will be held in two phases. Counting of votes will take place on March 11. In the first phase, a total of 38 assembly seats will go to the polls.
Source: Economic Times