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‘Eastern Nagaland’ MLAs reject poll boycott call

A forum of intending BJP candidates in Nagaland has asked the party’s central leadership to reconsider the 20:40 seat-sharing agreement with the NDPP.

January 24, 2023 10:38 am | Updated January 26, 2023 10:12 am IST - GUWAHATI

GUWAHATI

A union of 20 legislators from six districts seeking to exit from Nagaland has rejected a poll boycott call by the Eastern Nagaland People’s Union (ENPO).

Citing step-motherly treatment, the ENPO had set the granting of ‘Frontier Nagaland’ as a precondition for the people in six districts – Kiphire, Longleng, Mon, Noklak, Shamator and Tuensang – to participate in the February 27 elections to the 60-member Nagaland Assembly. The map of ‘Frontier Nagaland’ comprises 20 of these constituencies.

In a statement on January 23, the Eastern Nagaland Legislators’ Union (ENLU) comprising Ministers, MLAs and advisors to various Departments said its members resolved not to boycott the elections.

“In an emergency meeting held on January 22 pertaining to the ENPO resolution to abstain from the Nagaland Assembly election, we resolved to participate in the upcoming general election notified by the Election Commission of India on January 18,” the ENLU said. 

Election bugle: On Assembly polls in Meghalaya, Nagaland, Tripura

Although the ENPO refrained from reacting to the announcement of polls in Nagaland along with Meghalaya and Tripura, the Konyak Union said it would not budge from the decision to boycott the elections.

The Konyak Union, representing one of the seven major tribes that are stakeholders in the ENPO, had also resolved to “permanently expel” anyone who files a nomination to participate in the election “from the Konyak soil” and the “village of the person filing nomination shall be held responsible”.

Meanwhile, a forum of “intending” Bharatiya Janata Party candidates led by former Nagaland Minister, Nuklotoshi has appealed to the party’s central leadership to reconsider its seat-sharing agreement with the Nationalist Democratic Progressive Party (NDPP). The NDPP is the major partner in the United Democratic Alliance government in Nagaland.

A week ago, the BJP and NDPP decided to repeat its 2018 seat-sharing agreement for the upcoming polls and finalised the 20:40 formula.

The forum said it acknowledges the wisdom of the party’s central leadership but the agreement was “one-sided” and by giving 40 seats to the NDPP, “the BJP missed a great opportunity to form a strong and stable government with a strong national interest”. The forum insisted the seat-sharing deal should be 30:30.

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