TODAY -

BJP captures State's lone RS seat, disqualification drama precedes voting
Source: The Sangai Express

Imphal, June 19 2020: BJP candidate Leishemba Sanajaoba has been elected to the State's lone Rajya Sabha.

He defeated Congress party's Tongbram Mangibabu by 28 to 24 votes in the election held today amid high drama.

Significantly the Congress and its allies have 25 MLAs in the House while the BJP and its allies have 27 MLAs.

Speaking to media persons after he was declared elected, Leishemba Sanajaoba said that he would now be able to translate into action what he wishes and dreams to do for the people during the last 25 years.

He said that he has been serving the people of Manipur at his best capacity without any distinction between the hills and the valley.

"But I could not accomplish much due to financial constraints and other limitations.

I would now be able to work with more effect and purpose for the welfare of people", he said.



BJP captures State's lone RS seat, disqualification drama precedes voting
BJP captures State's lone RS seat, disqualification drama precedes voting


To a query, Sanajaoba said that he was not undermining the demand raised by some CSOs but the same is not acceptable to the hill and plain people alike, he contended.

Being a democratic country, the CSOs have the right to highlight their wishes and aspirations but the demand to abdicate the throne is not acceptable to the masses, Sanajaoba said.

He maintained that it would be too early to declare the list of works he would do as an MP.

Sanajaoba conveyed gratitude to BJP leaders of the Centre and the State, Chief Minister N Biren and NPF MLAs.

Chief Minister N Biren claimed that the victory of Leishemba Sanajaoba, supported by BJP and its allies, testifies there is still a stable Government in the State.

The victory of BJP is a victory of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP National president JP Nadda, he said.

He then conveyed gratitude to the people of Manipur and their MLAs.

Voting began at 9 am in the State Assembly's committee room under tight security.

Chief Minister N Biren was the first to cast vote while Congress MLA RK Imo voted last.

Just as voting was about to begin, three Congress MLAs namely Y Surchandra (Kakching AC), Ksh Biren (Lamlai AC) and S Bira (Kumbi AC) and MLA T Robindro who was elected from Thanga AC on AITC ticket were disqualified under the anti-defection law.

After being elected on AITC ticket, T Robindro merged with BJP on April 28, 2017.Since then, he was counted as a BJP MLA.

On April 28, 2017, The Sangai Express had carried the report of the AITC MLA and four Congress MLAs joining the BJP.

It was reported, "With BJP successfully embracing four more Congress MLAs under its wings, the coalition Government led by Nongthombam Biren has further consolidated its position.

"Moreover, the lone AITC MLA has also joined the BJP.

"The defectors from Congress namely Sanasam Bira (Kumbi AC), Y Surchandra (Kakching AC), O Lukhoi (Wangoi AC) and Ngamthang Haokip (Saitu AC) were accorded a warm reception at the Nityaipat Chuthek office of BJP Manipur Pradesh today by Chief Minister N Biren, BJP Manipur Pradesh president K Bhabananda, Assam Finance Minister Himanta Biswa and other BJP leaders.

"State Congress president TN Haokip said, 'Things have changed after the election.

Friends have become foes.

There is nothing called principle or ideology.

Those who crossed floor are not afraid of disqualification.

"Meanwhile, PDA Chairman and AITC, Manipur Pradesh MLA T Robindro (Thanga AC) too has joined BJP together with MPTC office bearers after abolition of the State unit of the party".

The day after T Robindro merged with BJP, Chief Minister N Biren wrote to the Assembly Speaker to let T Robindro sit on the Treasury Bench.

However, he left BJP on June 17 this year and openly declared his support to Congress party.

Citing all these events, MLA Th Satyabrata filed a petition at the Speaker's Tribunal on June 18 seeking disqualification of T Robindro under the Constitution's 10th Schedule.

The Speaker's Tribunal perused the petitioned yesterday before T Robindro was disqualified today.

Later in the evening today, separate gazette notifications were published which declared that the Assembly seats of Kakching, Lamlai, Kumbi and Thanga are now vacant.

Notably, Y Surchandra, Ksh Biren and S Bira were among the seven Congress MLAs who were barred from entering the State Assembly by the High Court.

As they have been disqualified, Y Surchandra, Ksh Biren, S Bira and T Robindro could not vote in the election held today.

However, MLA P Brojen who was among the seven MLAs was able to cast vote as the same restriction was relaxed for him by the High Court.

The other three Congress MLAs namely; Ngamthang Haokip, O Lukhoi and Ginsuanhao who have been supporting the BJP-led Government and facing the same disqualification case voted in today's election.

Led by CLP and SPF leader Okram Ibobi, Congress MLAs started voting only at around 1 pm.

O Ibobi, Gaikhangam and Y Joykumar left the Assembly complex in a car after 3 pm .

Other Congress MLAs and their allies left the Assembly complex in a bus.

Together with his Ministers and ruling MLAs, Chief Minister N Biren stayed in the Assembly complex till the counting was over.

Counting was held late as the ECI had stalled it following a complaint from Congress.


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