Manipur chief minister Nongthombam Biren Singh, who’s also the state’s first chief minister from the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), is confident that his party would form governments in Tripura and Nagaland in the Assembly elections scheduled this February. About Meghalaya, though, he has his doubts and hopes to do a repeat of Manipur in that state.
In an exclusive interview to News18, Singh said, “We’ll surely be ahead of the Left Front in Tripura and will be forming the government with our alliance partner, the Indigenous People’s Front of Tripura (IPFT). People in Tripura want change, like they have seen in Assam and Manipur. Anti-incumbency will be one of the reasons for the Left’s defeat.”
The Manipur chief minister felt that the efforts put in by BJP General Secretary, Ram Madhav, and Northeast Democratic Alliance (NEDA) convenor, Himanta Biswa Sarma, would ensure the party’s victory in Tripura.
Biren also sounded confident that his party would form the government in Nagaland with support from the newly formed National Democratic People’s Party (NDPP), led by former CM and Lok Sabha MP Neiphiu Rio. BJP’s election in-charge for Nagaland and Union Minister of State for Home, Kiren Rijiju on Saturday, announced BJP’s alliance with NDPP on a 20-40 seat-sharing formula.
The chief minister was also hopeful of finding a peace formula to the ‘Solution before Election’ demand by all major Nagaland parties in the context of the long pending Naga political issue.
“Development is taking place, but we are yet to catch up with what we want. Geographic barriers in Manipur need to be knocked down for development to take place, and in this context, Assam is doing far better. Manipur’s socio-political environment is complex; we have to solve many issues while promoting development,” he said.
Tripura will go to the polls on February 18, followed by Nagaland and Meghalaya on February 27. Counting of votes in all three states will take place on March 3.