Cong stalls BJP in Manipur, but falls short of majority

Krishnanand Tripathi
Voters standing in queue show their identity cards during the first phase of Manipur legislative assembly Election on Saturday at  Lilong, Imphal West.  Photo-PTI

Voters standing in queue show their identity cards during the first phase of Manipur legislative assembly Election on Saturday at Lilong, Imphal West.
Photo-PTI

Congress set to hold its fort in Manipur as it stalled BJP’s march in the state by winning 26 seats falling short of majority. BJP also made strong inroads in the state by winning 21 seats.

The ruling Congress today bagged 27 seats and was leading in one in Manipur, which seems to be heading for a hung assembly but Congress emerging as the largest party just short of majority.

Putting up a creditable performance BJP polled more votes at 36.2% in comparison with Congress’ 35% votes. But the party only won 21 seats.

BJP had high hopes for Manipur in its effort to have strong footprint in North Eastern States. Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed two rallies in Manipur and they paid off well. The party won 36.2 per cent vis-a-vis 35% polled to Congress.

But higher share votes did not translate into higher number of seats for the party as it could only won 21 seats.

The Naga Peoples Front (NPF) and National Peoples Party (NPP) have bagged four seats each, while the latter is leading in one. Lokjanshakti Party and an Independent captured one seat each.

Lok Jan Shakti Party and All India Trinmool Congress have one seat each. An Independent candidate has one seat.

Chief Minister Okram Ibobi Singh won from Thoubal Assembly seat defeating L Basanta Singh of BJP by 10,400 votes.

Rights activist Irom Sharmila, who had contested against the Chief Minister, finished fourth securing only 90 votes.

Other prominent Congress candidates who won included Md Abdul Naser and K Jaikishen Singh.

N Biren Singh, a key BJP leader, emerged victorious from Heingang Assembly seat. Other prominent BJP nominees who won included Sapam R Singh and Heikham Dingo Singh.

Y Jaikumar Singh and Langpoklakpam J Singh of Nationalist People’s Party (NPP) emerged victorious from Uripok and Keishamthong seat, respectively.

The Naga People’s Front won from Mao (ST), Tamei (ST) and Phungyar (ST) seats.

Lokjanshakti party won Langthabal seat.

(With inputs from agencies).