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Manipur political crisis | Nine MLAs, including three from BJP, pull out of Biren Singh government

Manipur Deputy Chief Minister Y. Joykumar. File  

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led coalition government in Manipur received a setback with nine Ministers and MLAs withdrawing support on Wednesday night. They include three lawmakers of the BJP, who have reportedly joined the Congress.

Deputy Chief Minister Y. Joykumar, one of the four MLAs of the regional National People’s Party (NPP), said all lawmakers of his party have withdrawn support.

Two independent MLAs have also withdrawn support to the Nongthombam Biren government, he added.

No-confidence motion

“We will move a no-confidence motion against the Chief Minister and try to form an alternative Ministry,” Mr. Joykumar told presspersons on Wednesday night, adding that the resignation letters have been submitted to the Chief Minister’s Office.

The coalition had been facing rough weather for a long time. Mr. Joykumar and another Minister, T. Bishwajit of the BJP, were stripped of their portfolios on the ground that there had been an overdraft of more than ₹250 crore.

The Chief Minister restored Mr. Bishwajit’s portfolios. He returned all but the key Finance portfolio to Mr. Joykumar, wresting them back again, except for Civil Aviation.

Health Minister L. Jayenta, also from NPP, said he had been complaining about the shoestring budget for the departments he had been entrusted with.

The Congress, which had won 28 seats in the 2017 Manipur polls, claimed it now has 31 MLAs in the 60-member House with an effective strength of 59 after the disqualification of former Forest Minister Thounaojam Shyamkumar. He had won the 2017 election on a Congress ticket but “defected” to the BJP.

Seven more Congress MLAs who had been supporting the BJP-led coalition are also facing the disqualification process. The final hearing is on June 22.

Many Ministers and MLAs are reported to be camping in an undisclosed location with the parties involved in the political drama apprehending horse-trading.

Until Mr. Shyamkumar’s disqualification, the BJP-led coalition had 40 MLAs in the Assembly. The BJP had won 21 seats in the 2017 State polls, while main rival Congress had won 28. The majority mark in the House is 31.

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Printable version | Jan 17, 2021 5:26:01 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/manipur-political-crisis-several-mlas-including-ones-from-bjp-pull-out-of-biren-singh-government/article31854878.ece

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