Congress Follows Assam Model In Manipur, Forms Six-Party Alliance

The alliance, the name of which will soon be announced, includes Congress, CPI, CPM, RSP, Forward Block and the Janata Dal Secular and will have a Common Minimum Programme.

For last year's polls in Assam, the Congress had formed a 10-party grand alliance.

Guwahati:

The Congress has followed its Assam model in Manipur, where state elections are due next month, creating a grand alliance with six political parties including the Left. The alliance, the name of which will soon be announced, includes Congress, CPI, CPM, RSP, Forward Block and the Janata Dal Secular and will have a Common Minimum Programme.

For last year's polls in Assam, the Congress had formed a 10-party grand alliance, calling it a Mahajot. But the experiment was not a great success, with the alliance winning only 50 of the state's 126 seats.

In Manipur, the combination is different and hopes to give tough contest to the BJP.

Calling it a "happy day for Manipur", the state's former Chief Minister, Congress's Okram Ibobi Singh, said, "This alliance has been formed for the assembly polls. We six like-minded secular parties have come together with a common cause to contest the polls".

The alliance will have a Common Minimum Programme, unlike the BJP-led alliance in Manipur, added Mr Singh, who was the Chief Minister for a record 15 years -- from 2002 to 2017.

"For the state polls, we have formed this alliance, since on this land an undemocratic , unconstitutional, communal party is in power… through its neo-liberal politics (it) has acted against the working class so it is time that secular parties join to defeat the BJP," said Satin Kumar, the state Secretary of the CPI.

Manipur Pradesh Congress President Nameirakpam Loken Singh said the parties are confident of defeating the state's ruling BJP.

The parties have decided that the CPI alone will nominate its candidate in the Khurai assembly constituency and in most of the other seats, the Congress will field its nominees.

The two parties will have a friendly fight at Kakching, as both have already announced their candidates for the seat.

There will be friendly fights on some other seats too, as some of the allies have already announced their candidates.

The Congress has already announced its first list of 40 candidates for this election while the CPI has announced 2 candidates.

Election will be held for 60 assembly seats of Manipur in two phases on February 27 and March 3. The counting of votes will take place on March 10.

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