Over the moon after the emphatic electoral victory, the Congress was hoping for an auspicious full-moon start to its third term. Failure to elect the Congress Legislature Party (CLP) leader after a two-hour meeting on Wednesday appears to have dashed that hope.
The Congress won a two-thirds majority by bagging 42 of the 60 seats on Tuesday. A five-party alliance of the opposition was decimated while the Trinamool Congress sprang a surprise by winning seven seats.
Many of the 42 victors wanted to be over with the customary march to Raj Bhavan on Thursday, the day of purnima (full moon), considered lucky by Manipuris. And this purnima is special because it marks the beginning of Yaoshang, arguably the longest variant of Holi. Yaoshang entails a five-day holiday even for newspapers.
“Though this will be our third stint, it is our first without any crutches (reference to the CPI, the Congress’s coalition partner during the last two terms). After winning the people’s trust, we need all the luck to start afresh for better governance,” a Manipur Pradesh Congress Committee (MPCC) leader told HT.
The customary invitation from governor Gurbachan Jagat will now have to be put off for another day after Wednesday’s marathon CLP meeting failed to yield a leader.
“The newly-elected legislators know best who their leader would be,” AICC general secretary in charge of Manipur Luizinho Faleiro said.