Goa Gone, Congress Fights BJP For Manipur: 10 Points


The Congress scaled up attack on BJP for stealing elections that it did not win.

New Delhi:  Decimated in the Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand in the just concluded assembly elections, the Congress angrily attacked the BJP for "murdering democracy" as two more states, Goa and Manipur - where it had emerged as the single largest party but was short of the majority mark - appeared to be slipping through its fingers. Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar has already got himself an invite from Raj Bhavan and is set to take oath as chief minister on Tuesday evening. The Congress is desperately trying to stop the BJP from repeating the same story in another state that delivered a fractured verdict; the BJP and Congress have met the Governor Najma Heptulla who hasn't decided yet whose name she should put on the letter inviting the insurgency-torn state's next chief minister.
Here are the 10 points in this big political story:
  1. With the BJP having sealed the deal in the coastal state of Goa, the Congress is focusing on Manipur where the party believes Okram Ibobi Singh, the chief minister who has ruled the insurgency-torn state Manipur for 15 years, can quickly stitch an alliance if given a chance.
  2. "BJP is stealing elections in Goa, Manipur... Party that comes second has no right to form government," former Union Minister P Chidambaram tweeted this morning. The BJP won just 13 of the 40 seats in Goa but got the invitation from the Governor on the strength of support from eight other lawmakers pushing its tally to the majority mark of 21.
  3. "This is the murder of democracy," Congress' Priyanka Chaturvedi told NDTV on the BJP's forming its government in Goa and attempting to do the same in Manipur.
  4. The Congress is the largest single party in Manipur with 28 seats - as against the BJP's 21 - in the 60-seat assembly and needs three more lawmakers to back it to cross the magic figure of 31.
  5. BJP's Himanta Biswa Sharma says the party already has letters of support of 30 legislators and was going to get another letter that would help the BJP form its first government in Manipur.
  6. A party founded by former Lok Sabha PA Sangma, National People's Party, may be the kingmaker with its four seats. It is yet to pick a side.
  7. The Congress attack is grounded in the argument that the largest party alone should get the invite in a hung assembly But Governors in Uttar Pradesh, a state that has returned a hung assembly on more than one occasion, have been more innovative to figure if the party would be able to provide a stable government.
  8. In 1993, the UP Governor did not invite the single largest party, the BJP, but the Samajwadi Party-Bahujan Samaj Party coalition to form government.
  9. The BJP again missed the invite in 1996 despite being the single largest party and the Governor recommended central rule. A BJP-BSP coalition government was formed a few months down the line.
  10. In 2002, the Samajwadi Party was the largest party but did not get the invite and the state headed for a short spell of President's rule.

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Congress is the largest single party in Manipur with 28 seats
BJP claims the party already has letters of support of 30 legislators
Congress has been decimated in assembly elections in UP and Uttarakhand

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