Kohima: The longstanding issues within the Nagaland BJP unit reached a new peak as seven district presidents of the party sought BJP National President JP Nadda’s intervention to be relieved from the responsibilities as district party presidents.
Addressing a press conference, Yanthungo Kikon, president, BJP Wokha district, informed that six district presidents from Phek, Wokha, Peren, Noklak, Tuensang, and Kohima wrote to Nadda with a plea to remove them from the responsibilities as district party presidents. He informed that the six would, however, remain active party workers.
Kikon said that if the problem within the party continues, there is a fear that in the next state general election, the present strength of 12 legislators may reduce to a single digit due to the “arbitrary and duplicitous functioning” of the state BJP president, Temjen Imna Along.
Since last year, the district party presidents have sought the intervention of the national party leaders, to remove the state BJP president from his post. Emphasising the “One Man, One Post” principle, the district party leaders said that the present state president is a legislator and a minister with many portfolios. The leaders reaffirmed the removal of Along from the post of party president for Nagaland BJP state unit.
The party leaders alleged that the Along has been unable to give time to the party workers. Kikon said that decisions were also made by the state president without the knowledge of the district presidents. He also said that there is no transparency in financial matters.
Tingsangai John Panmei, President BJP Peren district added that without addressing the issues, the state party president has removed some of the elected district presidents from their posts. To this, Kikon added that each district president has been elected by the party for a period of three years, the leaders—most of whom were elected in November 2019.
The leaders also alleged that the current state president and his “henchmen” are resorting to undemocratic practices that have resulted in a “parallel party organisational set-up”. The leaders alleged that Along has appointed “yes-man” to replace some of the district party presidents, removing the elected leaders without any notice or reason.
Earlier, district presidents had threatened to resign if the state party chief was not removed by February-end. To this, the district presidents told reporters that they continued to stay in office since many senior party workers, including legislators, appealed to them to remain in office. However, with no response from the central party, the district presidents pleaded for relieving them from their responsibilities as party presidents.
In the letter addressed to Nadda, the district presidents stated that their demands are “legitimate” and “stands vindicated to a degree” as seen during the November 3 by-election in 60 Pungro AC last year where the party lost by a huge margin managing just a distant third to the Independent candidate who won the election.