Assam Chief Minister and the BJP’s main strategist for the northeast, Himanta Biswa Sarma, on Wednesday said that the ruling party was confident of forming the next government in Manipur on its own and does not require the support of any ally.
Mr Sarma’s statement – during his first visit to Manipur after this month’s elections were announced – came at a time when the BJP’s key ally in the northeast, the Conrad Sangma-led NPP has been increasingly bold about coming out as a strong opponent to its partner in the state elections.
“Alliance with the NPP is a factor in Meghalaya. But as far as Manipur is concerned, the BJP would form the government on its own. BJP’s primary focus is now on getting a solid majority, rather than looking into the party’s future status with the partners,” Mr Sarma said.
Mr Sarma, who is also the convener of the BJP-led North East Democratic Alliance (NEDA), addressed a meeting of intellectuals in Imphal on the union budget.
He highlighted Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s efforts towards the holistic development of the northeastern region.
Manipur, which is governed by a BJP-led alliance, will vote on February 27 and March 3 with results on March 10. This time, the NPP has said it will go solo in the polls and has even been campaigning against the ruling coalition which it has been a part of for the last five years.