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Manipur BJP in celebration mode


Imphal, May 15: It is celebration time for the Manipur unit of the BJP on the eve of the counting of votes tomorrow with all exit poll results pointing to the NDA government coming to power in Delhi led by Narendra Modi.

The mood in the ruling Congress camp, on the other hand, is subdued and the party appears to accept the people’s mandate for change.

“We are ready to distribute sweets to the people tomorrow immediately after the results are known. In fact, the celebrations started today itself not only because of the fact that the BJP is coming to power but also at its success in dethroning the Congress,” Laimayum Basanta Sharma, the general secretary in-charge of media affairs, told The Telegraph.

There were intermittent downpours in Imphal since this morning.

This has not hampered party workers and leaders coming to the party’s head office here since early morning to exchange pleasantries and get an update on the latest development on the national scene.

The BJP is contesting both seats — Inner Manipur and Outer Manipur.

The party candidates — environmentalist R.K. Ranjan Singh in the Inner constituency and historian Gangmumei Kamei in the Outer constituency — have little chance of winning.

Exit poll results said the Congress would retain both the seats in Manipur. However, this fact has not dampened the spirit of the BJP.

“A team led by the party president will go to New Delhi immediately after the results are out to attend the swearing in,” Basanta Sharma said, summing up the jubilant mood of the party.

Chaoba Singh today presided over a meeting to finalise strategies for tomorrow’s counting.

The third term of the Okram Ibobi Singh government is running for more than two years.

At present, the BJP has no MLA in the 60-member House.

The Congress headquarters here presented a subdued mood, in quite a contrast to that of the BJP office.

The few party leaders that turned up spent the day discussing the likely outcome of the polls.

“You can’t say the outcome will go the way of the exit polls. As you know, in the past, the exit poll results were not always correct. But whichever party comes to power in Delhi should be accepted. The people’s mandate should be honoured and respected,” deputy chief minister and Manipur PCC president Gaikhangam said.

Gaikhangam, who is also the home minister, said a change of power in Delhi would not affect the state government.

He expressed confidence that the Congress would retain both the seats in Manipur.

The Congress has 47 MLAs.

In the 2012 Assembly election, the party won 42 seats.

The number increased to 47 after all the seven members of the Manipur State Congress Party (regional party) merged with the Congress just before the Lok Sabha election.