Two major political parties in Manipur on Saturday said they would announce the names of their candidates for the forthcoming next assembly polls on January 28 next, said sources in the parties on Saturday.
Manipur Pradesh Congress Committee (MPCC) president Gaikhangam told mediapersons that the party's election committee would meet on January 2 to shortlist the candidates of the party for the forthcoming polls saying more than 166 aspirants had submitted their nomination forms for the 60-member Manipur assembly to contest the polls.
He said the meeting would short list the candidates considering their background and loyalty the party and forward it to the party high command for approval hoping that the party high command would approve it either on 'January 5 or 6'.
Gaikhangam said some sitting MLAs of non-congress parties had applied for the congress tickets for the forthcoming elections but it could not be immediately decided whether they could be given tickets or not because all depended on the decision of the party's central leadership.
On the other hand, main opposition party, Manipur People's Party (MPP) on Saturday said that it would also hold party election committee meeting on January 2 next to finalise the list of the candidates.
Senior legislature wing leader O Joy said the party was likely to put up 15 candidates for the 60-member Manipur legislative assembly.
Sources in the party said MPP along with Nationalist Congress Party, Janata Dal (United) and state unit of the Rashtriya Janata Dal had formed a pre-poll alliance for the forthcoming polls.
Political observers said the main contestants for the forthcoming polls would be between congress and the alliance of MPP, JD (U), NCP and RJD combine Joy told reporters that they the combine would fight on the polls on the issue of Manipur's boundary, corruption, political conflict (insurgency and the government), misuse of drugs and identity of Manipuris.
Another opposition BJP said they would fight the elections on the issues of corruption by ruling congress.
Senior BJP leader and election observer of the north eastern states PV Acharya while speaking at a function of the party on Friday in Imphal said congress was indulging in high corrupt practices and it was time to throw them out of power this time.
State BJP unit vice president Tiken Singh said congress-led rule of secular progressive front (SPF) ministry (CPI is a minor ruling party of the SPF) for ten years could be described as 'dark decade of Manipur' as their rule killings, kidnappings for ransom, lootings, and all sorts of crimes reached maximum level.
He said it was time for the people of Manipur to realise to change the the government adding people suffered so much because of more than 100-day economic blockade on national highways some organisations, and other law and order related issues.
Meanwhile, sources in the main opposition parties, MPP, said two of its MLAs had resigned from the party to contest the elections under tickets of different parties.
Former deputy speaker and party MLA Th Shyamkumar had resigned from the party on December 28 last saying MPP leaders were 'indecisive' on major state issues and would contest under Trinamool Congress ticket.
Shyamkumar said he would contest elections under Trinamool Congress because Trinamool Congress offered ticket and to join the party after his resignation.
Another respectable MPP MLA RK Anand and well-known lawyer RK Anand had resigned from the party about a week ago and would fight the coming election under the different party tickets.
MPP sources said they had acted against anti-party activities but the resigned legislators said they had differences of opinion with party leaders.