Mnp pol crisis: NPP adamant; MLAs taken out of state

Correspondent IMPHAL, JUN 23 | Publish Date: 6/23/2020 1:12:10 PM IST

As National People’s Party (NPP) Manipur unit remained steadfast to its stand of not returning to the BJP-led coalition government, the four NPP legislators have left the state on Tuesday along with Assam minister and BJP’s troubleshooter, Himanta Biwas Sarma, who arrived in Imphal along with NPP president and Meghalaya chief minister Cornad Sangma by a special flight Tuesday.

Sarma and Sangma, who arrived Manipur for the second time in less than a week’s time amid the enforcing COVID-19 protocol, met with the NPP state unit leaders including the four MLAs who had resigned from being cabinet ministers in the Biren-led BJP’s coalition government.

The meeting was held at a farm house of NPP MLA L Jayentakumar who recently resigned as state health minister.

Later, Sarma met with some ministers and MLAs of the BJP including works minister Th Bisawjit at Hotel Grande in Imphal.

Talking to reporters after the series of meetings, Sarma expressed hope that the prevailing turmoil arising out of withdrawal of support to the Biren government by some MLAs, particularly by NPP, would be resolved at the earliest. He added that the differences between BJP and NPP would be sorted out as soon as possible.

Sarma said that he along with Sangma had arrived to discuss and resolve the issues between the two parties. “We are trying to resolve the issues. They (NPP leaders) are very tough. They are not in a position to readily agreeable. 

Sarma, however, did not explain the demand being placed by NPP and its MLAs.

There were reports said that NPP was demanding replacement of leadership of the coalition government. During recent visit of Sarma along with Sangma, they demanded removal of N Biren Singh as chief minister if they were to return to the coalition government, sources said.

As they left Imphal, BJP trouble shooter and Meghalaya chief minister took four MLAs of NPP along with them.

Sources said that the four MLAs – Y Joykumar, L Jayentakumar, Letpao Haokip and N Kayasii - were taken to Guhawati and likely to head to New Delhi to hold a meeting with BJP national leaders including Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union home minister Amit Shah on Wednesday.

On the other hand, two national Congress leaders, who arrived Imphal to take stock of the political situation, have returned to New Delhi Tuesday.

AICC general secretary Gaurav Gogoi and former Union minister Ajay Maken, who is also AICC in-charge of Manipur, had arrived Imphal a few days ago.

However, they were put at the quarantine centre after they were picked up by officials of the state health department as per COVID-19 pandemic protocol enforced in the state.

Even though BJP national leaders and NPP president Cornad Sangma were allowed free movement when they visited the state for two times in the recent time, the Congress leaders were not allowed to move out of their quarantine centre at Imphal Hotel.

Meanwhile, amid the prevailing political turmoil, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has reportedly summoned senior Congress leader and former Manipur chief minister Okram Ibobi Singh in connection with a case against him regarding alleged misappropriation of government funds to the tune of Rs 332 crore.

CBI registered an FIR case against the former chief minister in connection with the suspected misappropriation of funds allotted to Manipur Development Society (MDS) for development of infrastructure in the state.

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