Manipur Assembly Polls: Protests, resignations in state after BJP names election candidates

Soon after the Bharatiya Janata Party released its candidates for all 60 seats for the Manipur assembly polls, party supporters burnt effigies of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chief Minister N Biren Singh and shouted slogans as many were left disappointed.

Party offices were ransacked in various parts of the state and protesters gathered in several areas with placards. Security has been stepped up around the BJP headquarters in Imphal.

Several leaders have resigned though the exact number remained unclear, reports said. According to a report, most of the disgruntled leaders were those who were not selected to accommodate defectors from the Congress.

At least 10 former Congress leaders who joined the BJP were given tickets as the BJP announced it would contest all 60 seats in the Manipur assembly elections, releasing a list of its candidates.

The BJP has given tickets to three women candidates — Nemcha Kipgen from Kangpokpi, S.S. Olish from Chandel and Soraisam Kebi Devi from Naoriyapakhanglakpa.

The BJP has also fielded three former IAS officers — Dinganglung Gangmei (Dipu) from Nungba, Yengkhom Surchandra Singh from Kakching and Raghumani Singh from Uripok.

Names of BJP candidates for Manipur were released by union minister and state election in-charge Bhupender Yadav with state in-charge Dr Sambit Patra here.

The Manipur assembly polls will be held in two phases. In first phase polling will be held on February 27 in 38 assembly seats and in second phase polling will be held on March 3 in 22 assembly constituencies.

In the 2017 Assembly election, the BJP had won 21 seats but it formed the government with the help of smaller parties and independent MLAs.

The Congress had then emerged as the single largest party with 28 seats but failed to form the government.

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