Amidst reports of factionalism over the post of the Chief Minister in Manipur, caretaker Chief Minister N. Biren Singh and another contender for the top post Thongam Biswajit Singh on Tuesday rushed to Delhi to discuss the issue with the central leadership of the BJP.
The Parliamentary Board of the BJP on Monday appointed Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman and Union Law and Justice Minister Kiren Rijiju as central observers to select the legislature party leader in Manipur.
A top BJP leader said that the central leaders called Biren Singh and Biswajit Singh to Delhi for discussion on the leadership issue. “After meeting, Sitharaman and Rijiju might come to Imphal to discuss with other BJP MLAs and leaders to finalise the name of legislature party leader,” a BJP leader told .
Meanwhile, Manipur BJP Vice-President Ch Chidananda, refuting the media reports, strongly denied that there is more than one contenders for the CM’s post. Biswajit Singh was the second-in-command in the outgoing BJP government after Chief Minister and is in the party for longer than Biren Singh.
Biren Singh won from his traditional Heingang assembly constituency for the record 5th time while Biswajit Singh was elected to the assembly fourth time from Thongju seat.
The BJP has a thin majority of 32 MLAs in a 60-member Assembly.
BJP’s erstwhile ally National People’s Party secured seven seats while Janata Dal (United) won six seats, the Congress and the Naga People Front bagged five seats each, Kuki People’s Alliance, a newly floated tribal based party, managed two seats and three Independent candidates also got elected to the Assembly.
The NPF, JD(U) and an independent member announced to support the BJP government. For the first time in the electoral and parliamentary history of Manipur, five women members, highest ever, were also elected, including three of BJP and two of the NPP.
Biren Singh on Friday resigned from his post and the Governor asked him to continue in office until the new government takes charge.