Meghalaya CM demands tightened security for Manipur polls
Imphal, Feb. 20 (IANS): Condemning the attack on the father of one of his party’s candidates, Meghalaya Chief Minister and NPP President Conrad K Sangma on Saturday urged the Election Commission to take adequate security measures in Manipur to conduct a violence-free election.
Manipur Deputy Chief Minister Yumnam Joykumar Singh and leader of the National People’s Party’s (NPP) said that party’s Andro constituency Candidate L Sanjoy Singh’s father L Shamjai Singh was shot in the right shoulder on Friday night while he was at a campaign programme at Yairipok Yambem Leikai.
Unidentified assailants opened fire and Shamjai Singh was hit on the right shoulder and shifted to the hospital, the deputy chief minister said.
Sangma, who visited the hospital to see the condition of Shamjai Singh, said that a party delegation met Chief Electoral Officer Rajesh Agrawal and demanded to arrange adequate security to hold the free and fair elections to the Manipur assembly.
“The current trend suggests that the election might not be free and fair. Hence, we have demanded deployment of additional central paramilitary forces in Manipur especially in the vulnerable areas,” he said.
Asserting that the NPP would secure win in a large number of seats in the state, Sangma said that such attacks prove that the party is growing stronger.
The NPP, the dominant party of the Meghalaya Democratic Alliance government, has been an ally of the BJP in both the northeastern states (Meghalaya and Manipur) since 2017, but in the current assembly elections both the parties are contesting against each other. The NPP has put up 28 candidates while the BJP has fielded its candidates in all the 60 seats in the Manipur elections. Polling to the 60-member assembly will take place in two phases on February 27 and March 5. Votes will be counted on March 10.