BJP confident of forming govts in Nagaland, Meghalya

BJP confident of forming govts in Nagaland, Meghalya

BJP confident of forming govts in Nagaland, Meghalya

The BJP sees itself as the fulcrum of the next governments to be formed in Nagaland as well as Meghalaya.

In Nagaland, the BJP-Nationalist Democratic Progressive Party (NDPP) alliance is set to have comfortable numbers. But sections of the rival Naga Peoples Party (NPP) too are willing to join hands with Prime Minister Narendra Modi's party though not directly with the NDPP. The Congress was unable to win a single seat.

So the power game in Nagaland is essentially between two Naga leaders who led the battle. Both the leaders are allies of the BJP as well as members of the NDA alliance in the North-east.

Neiphiu Rio, who vacated the chief ministerial chair to become a Lok Sabha MP, is the chief ministerial face for the newly-formed NDPP. His successor T R Zeliang, who got himself reinstated in the chief minister's chair, was NPF's face.

It was the bitter rivalry between Zeliang and Rio that led to a split in the NPF, leading to the formation of NDPP. The BJP chose to go with Rio as he was rated as a better leader who could oversee the Naga peace process, which is the most important thing for the state.

If and when a final deal is worked out, the once insurgent Nationalist Social Council of Nagaland (NSCN) is expected to join mainstream politics. This may necessitate fresh elections in the state.

Meghalaya scene

In Meghalaya, the Congress has emerged as the single-largest party after being in power for a decade - but with lesser numbers to form a government on its own. Smaller and independents, numbering 17 in the 60-member House, hold the key. But they may be more inclined to the combine that is at striking distance to power.

The BJP is not mincing words in asserting that the Congress did not get the mandate in Meghalaya. Hence, the party will work for a non-Congress government in Shillong.

A party or an alliance of parties that wants to form government in Meghalaya requires a minimum of 30 seats.

The Congress had no pre-poll arrangement with any party. Neither did the BJP. But the National Peoples Party(NPP) is an NDA ally and a member of the BJP-led alliance in the North-east. NPP chief Conrad Sangma said: "We are hopeful that we will be able to form the government. People are fed up of the corrupt Congress government and are looking for a change."

Both the BJP and the Congress are likely to approach the United Democratic Party (UDP) that has won six seats followed by the People's Democratic Front (PDF) with four and the Hill State People's Democratic Party with two. The Khun Hynniewtrep National Awakening Movement and the Nationalist Congress Party won one seat each. Independent candidates won three seats.

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