Himanta Biswa Sarma, chief minister of Assam and the representative of the BJP in the north east, predicted a huge victory for the party in the upcoming elections in the three states of the area. “In Meghalaya, the BJP will emerge as a more important political force. In Tripura, we will retain power with an increased majority, and in Nagaland, we will once again form a government with the NDPP,” Sarma told NewsMadura in an exclusive interview.
With the declaration of party candidates for Meghalaya and Nagaland today, the BJP is all set for the crucial polls later this month. Elections will be held in Tripura on February 16, followed by Meghalaya and Nagaland on February 27.
For the BJP, in power in all three states, it is time for the 2024 general elections. In Tripura, it formed a government with IPFT after single-handedly winning 36 seats, from scratch, in a historic mandate . It has also allied itself with regional powers in the other two states.
“The BJP has transformed Tripura. During the leftist regime, people were terrified of the government,” Sarma told NewsMadura.
This time, the left and the Congress have united to push the BJP out of power in Tripura. The Left Front contests 47 of the state’s 60 seats, leaving just 13 seats for Congress. The BJP contests 55 of the total 60 seats and IPFT contests five.
Meghalaya is currently ruled by Conrad Sangma’s National People’s Party, in conjunction with the BJP and four other regional allies. The six-party Meghalaya Democratic Alliance is the third coalition in 50 years to run for a full term. But the ruling alliance has seen a growing rift in recent months and the BJP has decided to contest all 60 seats on its own.
Mamata Banerjee’s Trinamool Congress is the major entrant contesting its first election in the state. But it is already the largest opposition party, with 12 of the 17 Congress MLAs transferring to it, led by former Chief Minister Mukul Sangma.
In Nagaland, the BJP won 12 seats in 2018 and collaborated with Neiphiu Rio’s NDPP-led government. This time the party is fighting together with NDPP. Of the 60 seats, NDPP is fighting for 40 seats, BJP for 20 seats.
“The biggest asset for the BJP in the Northeast is the benevolence of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The profit margin for the BJP will be much bigger in the Northeast this time around,” Sarma told NewsMadura.