Manipur government shakes as NPF announces withdrawal of support soon

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Imphal, Feb 18 (IANS) The BJP-led Manipur government appeared shaky as the Naga People’s Front announced on Sunday that it is likely to withdraw support to it after the Nagaland elections slated for February 27.

“We have decided to withdraw support from the coalition soon. The decision may be announced shortly after the Nagaland elections,” said NPF’s state President Marung Makunga.

The NPF MLAs has four lawmakers in the 60-member Assembly, where the BJP has only 21 and dependent on other allies for its majority. An NPF lawmaker is a cabinet minister.

“During a public meeting, Chief Minister N. Biren Singh told the NPF members of the Autonomous District Council of Chandel district to join the BJP. Was it a mere joke or mocking our party or showing disrespect to our party?” Makunga asked during a press conference here.

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Political observers feel that the parting of ways may be the last straw for the coalition government. Indications are that the High Court is likely to take firm decision on March 13 when the petitions against the appointment of 12 Parliamentary secretaries will be heard.

State Congress president T.N. Haokip said that the eight Congress MLAs who had joined the BJP may have to return or face disqualification proceedings and the party has submitted petitions to Governor Najma Heptulla and Speaker Y. Khemchand in this regard.

Other NPF leaders said that the Chief Minister had announced allotment of crores of rupees for the hill districts as part of his slogan “go to the hills” but nothing has been done after such announcements.

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The NPF’s announcement comes in wake of the developments in Nagaland where the BJP has sumped the NPF, an ally for over a decade and tied up with a newly-floated party for the state assembly polls.

–IANS

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