Northeast polls: Nagaland deals crushing blow to Cong

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Nagaland Tripura Meghalaya
New Delhi, Feb 28: The overall results in Tripura, Nagaland and Meghalaya assembly elections were along expected lines but the extent of loss for the Congress in Nagaland was surprising and reflects poor handling of militants issue. A Congress candidate in Nagaland (Moatemjen) forefeited his deposit by getting just 98 votes.

In Tripura, the CPI-M managed to gain from its front partners and notch up a more than a convincing victory. In Meghalaya, the Congress has won 29 seats, taking few seats from its partner NCP but the picture is grim for the Congress in Nagaland.

In Nagaland the Congress had won 23 seats in 2008 and in contrast in 2013 it had just managed to hold on to the political landscape with eight seats.

The Nagaland problems were compounded by somewhat stiff stance adopted by Manipur's Congress Chief Minister Okram Ibobi Singh. Even after the elections were announed in Nagaland, he was not prepared to accept any peace deal between the Centre and the NSCN (I-M) if it harms Manipur's interest and disturbs its territorial integrity.

Ibobi Singh said he had clearly conveyed Manipur's stand to Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde during a meeting in New Delhi. He also sought details of the offers made by the Centre to the NSCN (I-M). Shinde assured him that the information would be made available at the appropriate time.

Territorial integrity is a sensitive issue in Manipur and Ibobi Singh sought to clear doubts in the minds of the people about his meeting with Shinde and his stand on the Centre's plan to conclude the NSCN (I-M) peace talks.

Ibobi Singh said the Centre was planning to sign the deal after the Nagaland Assembly election. "We will welcome a solution which is acceptable to all," he added.

"We want to maintain good relationships with neighbouring states. We also don't want to harm the interest of other states. We want peace and development in all the states in the region," Ibobi Singh said.

The people in the five hill districts have been complaining of negligence by the state government. The Nagas have been seeking an alternative administrative arrangement while the Kukis have been seeking a separate state.

Sarkar takes Left to 5th win in Tripura

Meanwhile, the ruling Left Front won the Tripura polls by a landslide with the CPI(M) winning 49 seats and the CPI one in the 60-member Assembly. It's a fifth straight term for the Left Front since 1993.

Congress retained it tally of 10 seats while its allies INPT and NCT drew a blank.

Chief Minister Manik Sarkar won the Dhanpur Assembly seat defeating his nearest Congress rival Shah Alam by 6,017 votes.

"This is a great victory for the Left Front and shows its popularity and public support. Good governance is one of the key factors for the thumping victory," gloated CPI(M) spokesperson Gautam Das. "People voted for the Left to establish peace and development in all sectors," Das said.

The CPI(M) led by Manik Sarkar, which has taken credit for ending the four-decade-old insurgency in the state and ensuring peace and communal harmony, projected Tripura as a model state in terms of good governance having topped the list in the implementation of MNREGA during the poll campaign.

NPF increases tally in Nagaland

In Nagaland, the NPF (Naga Peoples Front) swept back to power today to form the government for the third consecutive time winning absolute majority by securing 37 of the total 60 seats.

The state party bettered its tally in the 12th Nagaland assembly by two seats against 35 it won last time. It had contested in all the seats. NPF allies JD(U) and BJP won a seat each. Congress' electoral luck deserted it as the party could win only eight seats compared to the 18 it won last time. NCP contested 15 but won in four seats, while RJD failed to open its account though it entered the fray in two constituencies. Independents won 8 seats. Elections were held in 59 of the total 60 seats. Election to Teunsang Sadar was countermanded following the death of Congress candidate P Chuba Chang a day before the February 23 polls.

Former Home Minister and NPF candidate Imkong L Impchen, who resigned following his arrest for allegedly carrying over Rs one crore in cash, arms and ammunition besides liquor in his vehicle ahead of the assembly polls, defeated independent candidate T Chalukumba Ao by 5735 votes.

No Sangma factor in Meghalaya

Despite PA Sangma factor the Congress won 29 seats in the election to the 60-member Meghalaya Assembly with Chief Minister Mukul Sangma, his wife D D Shira and his brother Zenith Sangma winning with huge margins.

Lone woman legislator Ampareen Lyngdoh retained her urban 16 East Shillong seat edging out her nearest rival and former deputy chief minister B M Lanong of the UDP by over 4000 votes.

The PA Sangma led National Peoples Party just managed to a win two seats.

Carved out of Assam in 1972, Meghalaya has seen 23 chief ministers in a span of 41 years.

Final results

Tripura Party Position - Total seats : 60 Election held : 60 Results declared : 60. CPI(M): 49, CPI: 1, Congress: 10.

Nagaland Party Position - Total Seats : 60 Election Held: 59, Results Declared: 59, Naga Peoples Front (NPF): 37, Indian National Congress (INC): 8, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP): 1, Nationalist Congress Party (NCP): 4, JD(U): 1, Independents : 8.

Meghalaya Party Position - Total Seat: 60, Election Held: 60, Results Declared: 60, INC: 29, UDP: 8, HSPDP: 4, NCP: 2, NPP: 2, NESDP: 1, GNC: 1, Independents: 13.

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