Nagaland polls: BJP, NDPP likely to readjust seat-sharing pact

Kohima, Jan 29 (IANS): Nagaland's ruling partners -- BJP and Nationalist Democratic Progressive Party (NDPP) are likely to readjust their earlier 40:20 seat-sharing deal for the February 27 elections to the 60-member Assembly.

BJP sources said that state and central leaders are holding talks with the NDPP leaders to allot four more seats to the saffron party as there are a huge number of aspirants seeking party (BJP) tickets across the state.

Demanding party tickets, a large number of possible candidates during the past one week are assembling at various party offices and pressurising state leaders to get the party tickets.

The NDPP and the BJP had contested the 2018 elections with a 40:20 seat-sharing formula and the alliance partners in July last year have decided to continue with the same understanding.

BJP sought four urban seats - Kohima Town, Mon Town, Tuensang Sadar-II and Wokha - in addition to its share of 20 and the Chief Minister and senior NDPP leader Neiphiu Rio reportedly agreed to provide four more seats to the ruling partner.

BJP Nagaland state election committee meeting was held on Saturday and discussed various election related matters. The meeting was chaired by state President Temjen Imna Along and attended by deputy Chief Minister Y. Patton, national BJP spokesperson Nalin Kohli

The BJP and the NDPP leaders, including the Chief Minister Rio amidst discontentment over ticket allotment, had earlier categorically reaffirmed that there was no question of reviewing the 40 (NDPP):20 (BJP) seat sharing deal.

A section of the BJP leaders, mostly ticket contenders, mounted pressure on the ruling United Democratic Alliance (UDA) to allow the BJP to contest 30 seats.

"If the BJP with just two MLAs can contest all 60 seats in Meghalaya, why can't the party with 12 MLAs in Nagaland be allotted 30 seats?," a BJP Leader said, refusing to be named.

The BJP leaders in Meghalaya have announced to field candidates in all 60 seats against the dominant partner National People's Party, which is leading the 6-party Meghalaya Democratic alliance.

The third party in the UDA government - Naga People's Front (NPF) - is likely to contest the election alone.

The NPF had emerged as the single largest party in the 2018 elections, but the NDPP and the BJP managed to form a coalition government.

In April last year, 21 of the 26 NPF legislators had "merged" themselves with the NDPP and formed the opposition less all party UDA government to expedite the Naga political dialogue with the Central government.

The Congress, which ruled the state for the most part, does not have a single MLA.



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Title: Nagaland polls: BJP, NDPP likely to readjust seat-sharing pact

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