Imphal: Upset over preference to turncoats in the Bharatiya Janata Party’s candidate lists, many BJP members erupted in protest across Manipur on Sunday. Angry workers in constituencies with many ticket seekers ransacked offices, pulled down party flags and banners and set them ablaze. However, no untoward incidents were reported at major offices of the party in the state capital and district headquarters, which were put under an unprecedented security cover.

In a video that went viral on Sunday evening, a cow with its head on a BJP flag was slaughtered by some villagers in a protest against the denial of BJP tickets for the ensuing Manipur Assembly Election.

On Sunday, the Manipur BJP announced the full list of party candidates to contest in the ensuing Manipur Assembly election.

Also read: Manipur 2022: BJP releases candidates list, to contest on all 60 seats

Chief Minister N Biren Singh had the last laugh with SS Olis and son-in-law RK Imo securing party tickets. The party fielded the chief minister from his Heiyang assembly segment. Three sitting MLAs — Y Erabot Singh of Wangkei A/C, P Saratchandra of Moirang A/C and M Rameshwar Singh of Kakching A/C were dropped.

The party fielded Congress turncoat Okram Henry Singh whose election was nullified by the high court of Manipur for withholding information in his election affidavit filed in 2017. Henry is the nephew of former Congress Chief Minister Okram Ibobi. The party chose M Prithviraj and Y Surchandra over P Saratchandra and M Rameshwar Singh for Moirang and Kakching assembly seats respectively.

Protesting against the candidature of Congress turncoat RK Imo Singh who switched over to the BJP in November last year, BJP workers ransacked the Sagolband mandal office and declared abolition of madal.

As anticipated, with the announcement of BJP’s candidate, those, who did not get a party ticket, resigned from the primary membership of the party and joined other parties. While Erabot decided to opt for the NPP and another BJP ticket seeker Ratankumar joined Janata Dal (united) in Wangkhei constituency. Meanwhile angry supporters of P Saratchandra pledged allegiance to the Congress.

The Congress had announced its first list of 40 candidates. Upset over the denial of Congress ticket, workers of former Hiyanglam MLA and Manipur Pradesh Congress Committee vice-president Dr Elangbam Dwijamani resigned from the primary membership of the party. Dwijamani and his supporters also burned Congress flags and banners to register their strong protest against party leadership.

Sources said the Congress, which had bagged 28 seats in the 2017 election, is planning to enter into a pre-poll alliance with some Left parties. The candidates for the remaining 20 seats will be announced after finalising the seat sharing deal with the Left parties, they added.

The NPP had also announced its first list of 20 candidates for Manipur assembly elections. The party, which has four sitting MLAs and is currently in alliance with the BJP, is going alone in the upcoming election and has fielded candidates against its ally in all the seats.

Manipur assembly elections will go to poll in two phases. First phase voting is scheduled for February 27 and the second phase March 3. Notification will be issued on February 1 for the first phase and on February 4. Last date for filing nomination for phase-I is February 8 and for phase-II February 11. Scrutiny will be held on February 9 and February 14 for phase-I and phase-II respectively. Counting of votes will take place on March 10.

Also read: Manipur: Former cop Thounaojam Brinda joins JD(U)

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