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Unprecedented security measures in place at BJP offices before announcement of party candidates

Security at BJP office Imphal

Though political observers fear that those denied party tickets may indulge in volatile actions, state BJP president A Sharda Devi ruled out senseless violence after the announcement of the party candidates.

TFM Report

As the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) gears up to name its candidates for 12 Manipur Legislative Assembly elections, all the party offices, including its state office at Nityaipat Chuthek in Imphal West, have been brought under an unprecedented security cover. Security arrangements are made to thwart any untoward incidents during the announcement of BJP candidates list, said police sources.

The police personnel deputed for it have been directed to take their respective posts with immediate effect and until further order.

Many have anticipated that BJP’s candidate list will trigger a fresh round of party hopping among those who will be denied party tickets. The party, which is planning to field candidates in all the 60 Assembly constituencies, is already sensing internal party spat that may erupt as multiple candidates are vying for candidature on the saffron party ticket in most of the Assembly segments. All aspiring candidates are claiming that they will get the BJP ticket and many have gone full throttle with their election campaigns to woo voters.

Party sources said most of the names to be fielded in 60 assembly segments have been finalised. The party may announce the list anytime soon, they added.

Though many political observers fear that those denied tickets may indulge in volatile actions, state BJP president A Sharda Devi ruled out senseless violence after the announcement of the party candidates. The BJP is a disciplined party, she asserted. Names of candidates have been finalised after intensive and extensive surveys conducted earlier, she added.

Stating that surveys have proven to be very effective, she said the inputs from the surveys have been taken into consideration in finalising the name of the candidates in the list.

Sharda, along with Chief Minister N Biren, Public Works Minister Th Biswajit, had been in Delhi to attend the Central Election Committee meeting. The trio reportedly went with a list of candidates shortlisted during the BJP ticket committee meeting after they were summoned to Delhi by the national leaders to take their suggestions on the finalisation of the BJP list.

After their return from Delhi, the trio refused to speculate any date for the announcement of the list to the media. A Sharda said though the list of candidates has been finalised, it will take some time before it is announced. The candidate names will surely be announced once the election notification is issued, she added.

Th Biswajit, who is also BJP’s National Executive Committee member said that party tickets will be given based on the merit of the candidature. Being party MLA is no guarantee for the party’s ticket, he added.

Media reports said that in the CEC meeting discussed in detail some ‘problematic’ Assembly Constituencies over ticket allocation, particularly where new entrants to the party have been admitted.

The Congress had announced its first list of 40 candidates. Upset over the denial of Congress ticket, workers of former Hiyanglam MLA and Manipur Pradesh Congress Committee Vice-president Elangbam Dwijamani resigned from the primary membership of the party. Dwijamani and his supporters also burned Congress flags and banners to register their strong protest against party leadership.

Sources said the Congress, which had bagged 28 seats in the 2017 election, is planning to enter into a pre-poll alliance with some Left parties. The candidates for the remaining 20 seats will be announced after finalising the seat sharing deal with the Left parties, they added.

The NPP had also announced its first list of 20 candidates for Manipur assembly elections. The party, which has four sitting MLAs and is currently in alliance with the BJP, is going alone in the upcoming election and has fielded candidates against its ally in all the seats.

Manipur assembly elections will go to poll in two phases. First phase voting is scheduled for February 27 and the second phase March 3. Notification will be issued on February 1 for the first phase and on February 4. Last date for filing nomination for phase-I is February 8 and for phase-II February 11. Scrutiny will be held on February 9 and February 14 for phase-I and phase-II respectively. Counting of votes will take place on March 10.


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