Congress, NPF demand ‘Karnataka justice’ in three Northeast states
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Congress, NPF demand ‘Karnataka justice’ in three Northeast states

In Manipur, a Congress delegation met the governor and submitted a memorandum demanded that the BJP-led government be dismissed.

india Updated: May 18, 2018 22:29 IST
Sadiq Naqvi
Sadiq Naqvi
Hindustan Times, Guwahati
Naga People’s Front,PB Acharya,Congress
Opposition Congress members during a press conferance in Meghalaya to protest against the Karnataka Governor Vajubhai Vala's decision to invite BJP leader BS Yeddyurappa to take oath as chief minister following a split verdict in the state. (HT Photo)

The Naga People’s Front (NPF) on Friday asked Nagaland Governor PB Acharya to invite Leader of the Opposition and former chief minister TR Zeliang to form the government in the state.

“In Karnataka, BJP without having the magic figure is being allowed to form the government in the name of ‘single largest party’ whereas in Nagaland, NPF Party led by TR Zeliang was not allowed to do the same despite being the single largest political party,” a statement from Zeliang’s office said.

The party had 26 MLAs in the 60-member house when governor Acharya invited the Progressive Democratic Alliance of the BJP and the NDPP to form the government. The two alliance partners won 30 seats, one short of majority. The NPF, a former ally of the BJP in Nagaland, interestingly, is also part of the BJP-led North East Democratic Alliance (NEDA).

“Why wasn’t the NPF sworn in and given 15 days time to prove its majority on the floor of the House?” Zeliang asked.

Meanwhile, in neighbouring Manipur, a delegation led by former chief minister and leader of the Congress legislature party Okram Ibobi Singh met governor Jagdish Mukhi on Friday and submitted a memorandum demanded that the BJP-led government be dismissed.

“If I am invited to form the government I can assure you that we will provide a stable government and will prove the majority on the floor of the House within 15 days,” Singh wrote in the memorandum.

The former chief minister of Manipur said he told Mukhi, who recently took oath as Manipur governor, that like Karnataka, Manipur is also in India. “Why should the governor apply different principle here,” he asked. In the 2016 elections, Congress had emerged as the single largest party with 28 seats. “We thought the governor would do justice and invite us. But she, under pressure from the diktat of Amit Shah invited BJP,” Singh said.

Similarly, in Meghalaya the Congress organised a protest in capital Shillong and submitted a memorandum to the President through the governor. The Congress, which recently went to polls along with Nagaland, had emerged as the single largest party with 21 seats.

Karnataka Governor Vajubhai Vala is “attempting to permit the BJP to convert minority into majority by horse trading,” the three-page memorandum alleged.

State unit of the Congress party organised protests in Agartala and Guwahati, too, under the AICC call of ‘Save democracy day’. “If we allow the Karnataka like situation to continue, there will soon be an authoritarian dictatorship under Narendra Modi. We have to save the Constitution,” said Assam state Congress president Ripun Bora, as he attended the protest with around 100 other members of the party at Dighali Pukhri, a lake in the heart of Guwahati.

Responding to Bora’s allegations, BJP spokesperson and media in-charge of Assam Rupam Goswami said the Congress has nothing against the NDA government and that is why it was resorting to such allegations. “We all know who killed democracy during the Emergency. Congress government have imposed president’s rule more than 70 times,” he said.

(With inputs from Priyanka Deb Barman in Agartala and David Laitphlang in Shillong)

First Published: May 18, 2018 22:28 IST