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Manipur Congress All For Support- Independents Pose No Hurdle

Manipur Chief Minister Okram Ibobi Singh. Image Credit: Bombiel Media.

IMPHAL, Jan. 10: With the results of the eight municipal councils and 18 Nagar Panchayats elections coming in, the Congress is looking to Independents‘ support.

Of the 227 wards where elections were held, the ruling Congress won 134, while the Independents finished a close second, winning 115 wards.

The Opposition NCP and the ruling CPI, which is a partner in the Okram Ibobi Singh-led Secular Progressive Front coalition, won 10 Wards each, while the Manipur Peoples’ Party (MPP) won only eight seats. The BJP could not win even a single ward.

Though the Congress has emerged as the biggest winner, the party, which is trying to come back for the third consecutive term after the Assembly elections, has reasons to be worried.

‘It is a surprise that the Independents have emerged as a strong force. This does not augur well for our party especially in view of the upcoming Assembly elections. The only consolation is that the winners are Independents and they are not from the Opposition parties,’ a senior party leader said.

However, the emergence of Independents as a strong force does not pose much of a threat to the Congress in capturing power in the eight municipal councils and 18 Nagar Panchayats, as the Independents are willing to extend support to the Congress.

M. Olen, the media convener of Manipur PCC, said the emergence of a strong force of the Independents did not pose any threat to the Congress.

‘We have started consultations to form the councils and Nagar Panchayats. Independents will go along with the Congress. We will be in power. A large number of Independents won because in many wards, the Congress did not field its candidates on party tickets so as not to disturb the balance among party workers. So we allowed our ticket aspirants to contest as Independents,’ he said.

Olen said those who voted for the successful Independents were Congress supporters. ‘The dismal performance by the other parties has demonstrated that there is no alternative to the Congress,’ he added.

However, sections of the party leaders felt that the party should work more and remain silent. ‘The emergence of a large number of Independents does not augur well for the party. We should not remain complacent and work more,’ a party leader said.

(Courtesy: Telegraph India)

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