Won't Quit Yet, Says Nagaland Chief Minister Zeliang, Will Persuade BJP

Nagaland Chief Minister TR Zeliang told the governor he would meet BJP leaders in Delhi to discuss government formation in Nagaland

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Nagaland election: Chief Minister TR Zeliang's party Naga People's Front and its ally won 28 seats


Kohima: 

Highlights

  1. NDPP, backed by ally BJP, has staked claim to form government in Nagaland
  2. But NPF, which said it was in talks with BJP, says can prove majority too
  3. Chief Minister TR Zeliang says he will go to Delhi to meet BJP leaders
On a day of fast-paced political developments, the cliffhanger in Nagaland showed no signs of winding down. Chief Minister TR Zeliang met the governor not to resign but to express his intent for another term.

This came just hours after the BJP and its pre-poll ally the Nationalist Democratic Progressive Party (NDPP) staked claim to form the government. BJP leader Ram Madhav and the alliance's chief ministerial pick Mr Neiphiu Rio met Nagaland governor PB Acharya at 11 am.

"We have decided to stay with our pre-poll ally NDPP," said Mr Madhav. 

Mr Zeliang met the governor at 4 pm for nearly an hour and left without speaking to reporters. Later, the governor put the cards on the table.

"I was thinking that he would come to put in his resignation but that was not the case. He is still thinking that he can form the government and he has the majority," said Mr Acharya.

While Mr Zeliang's party, the Naga People's Front (NPF) has won 26 seats, it's ally National People's Party (NPP) has two seats. The BJP and NDPP together have 30 lawmakers.

In the 60-member Nagaland assembly, 31 lawmakers are need to form the government.  Two lawmakers -- an Independent and one from the JD(U) -- have already pledged support to the BJP-NDPP alliance.

Mr Zeliang told the governor that he would meet BJP leaders in Delhi. His party chairman has written to BJP chief Amit Shah, saying that the BJP and NPF could give Nagaland a much more stable government than the BJP-NDPP combine.

Mr Zeliang had claimed on counting day that he had back channels open with the BJP.

The NPF, in alliance with the BJP, was in power in Nagaland before its former leader Neiphiu Rio broke away to form the NDPP.

Both Mr Rio and Mr Zeliang have 48 hours to show that they have the numbers. "As a constitutional head, whoever has the majority, above 30, I will call them," said the governor.


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