NPF decides to contest elections
Congress, NDPP and JD (U) refuse to bite the bullet yet
Dimapur, Feb. 2 (EMN): After the announcement by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) that it intends to contest the Nagaland assembly elections ‘per schedule,’ the Nagaland People’s Front (NPF) has more or less confirmed to participate in said elections.
In a statement issued on Fri. the NPF stated that the government of India had repeatedly pointed out that holding timely elections in the state was a constitutional requisite and that the centre was bound by constitutional provisions.
“It therefore, appears that election scheduled for February 27 is a reality. If all Naga NGOs / political parties could not arrive at a consensus on deferment of elections, NPF as a recognized political party cannot be an exception to participating in the upcoming general elections.
“The NPF as a party, has solemnly pledged allegiance to the principle of socialism, secularism and democracy. However, our commitment towards solution of the Naga political issue shall continue as in the past,” the statement read.
The NPF, it stated, has always stood for early and honourable solution to the Naga political problem. “As far back as in 1964, the party’s legislators resigned en masse once ceasefire agreement was signed between the government of India and the Naga nationalist group. In 1998, heeding the call of the civil societies and the underground groups, the party had refrained from participating in the Assembly elections which resulted in the Election Commission of India derecognizing the party freezing the symbol of the party.
“On December 15, 2017, the NPF-led DAN government adopted a resolution on the floor of the Assembly to urge the government of India to bring a solution to the Naga political issue before elections, and this resolution was further endorsed by the central executive council of the NPF on January 23, 2018,” it added.
A PTI report on Fri. had Rajya Sabha member and NPF secretary general K G Kenye as saying that the party has entrusted its president, Shurhozelie Liezietsu, and Chief Minister T R Zeliang with the task of finalising the candidates and taking a decision on seat-sharing with the BJP.
It reported that the All India Congress Committee (AICC) has also approved the list of candidates suggested by the Nagaland Congress. The party, it stated, would stand firm on its commitment that unless the other parties filed nominations, it would not do so.
The report also quoted the Nationalist Democratic Progressive Party’s (NDPP) working president Nuzota Swuro as saying: “We are mentally and physically prepared to contest the election, but everything depends on the filing of nominations by the other political parties.”
JD(U) Nagaland convener Senchumo NSN Lotha said the party was preparing to contest from at least 10 seats, if the polls were held, according to the PTI.