BJP supporters burned effigies of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Manipur’s Chief Minister N Biren Singh and shouted slogans as protests erupted on Sunday after the party named candidates for next month’s elections, disappointing many.
Party offices were raided in different parts of the state and protesters rallied with placards in several areas. Security has been tightened around the BJP headquarters in Imphal.
Some party officials hoping for tickets have resigned, although the exact number remained unclear, reports said. According to sources, most of the disgruntled leaders were those who were not selected to accept defectors from Congress.
At least 10 former Congress leaders who aligned themselves with the BJP received tickets when the BJP announced it would contest all 60 seats in the Manipur general election and published a list of their candidates.
Chief Minister N. Biren Singh will take office from his traditional seat in Heeingang. Another key minister in Manipur, Biswajit Singh, will take office from his seat in Thongju. Former national footballer Somatai Saiza will start from Ukhrul.
In the 2017 election, the BJP won 21 seats but formed the government with the help of smaller parties and independent MLAs. Of those, 19 MLAs have received party tickets and three have been dropped, BJP sources added.
The Manipur BJP only put up three women and one Muslim candidate. Former Manipur Congress leader who joined the BJP, Govindas Konthoujam, has also received a party ticket to take part in the election.
Most of the prime minister’s supporters have party tickets, BJP sources said.
The three women are Nemcha Kipgen from Kangpokpi, SS Olish from Chandel and Soraisam Kebi Devi from Naoriyapakhanglakpa. The BJP has also installed three former Indian Administrative Service officials – Dinganglung Gangmei from Nungba, Yengkhom Surchandra Singh from Kakching and Raghumani Singh from Uripok.
“The BJP will contest all 60 seats and get the majority alone. The Modi government has ensured that Manipur has a stable government and will continue to ensure development and peace in the region,” said Bhupendra, BJP elections chief in Manipur, Yadav said.
The BJP-led National Democratic Alliance holds the majority in the Manipur Assembly. These include 30 BJP MLAs, three National People’s Party MLAs, four Naga People’s Front and three independents.