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NDPP-BJP alliance returns to power with a bigger majority in Nagaland: Here is how development and peace were main planks in the state

Neiphiu Rio-led Nationalist Democratic Progressive Party (NDPP) has won 25 seats, while BJP has won 12 seats in the Nagaland assembly polls

Neiphiu Rio is set to become the Chief Minister of Nagaland for the fifth time, as the NDA alliance is heading for a spectacular victory. Rio-led Nationalist Democratic Progressive Party (NDPP) is winning 25 seats, while BJP has won 12 seats as per the latest results. Therefore, the ruling alliance is returning to power with a comfortable majority in the 60-member house.

Among the three north-eastern states that went to assembly polls, Nagaland, Meghalaya and Tripura, the result of Nagaland is the least surprising, as it was widely expected that NDA led by Rio will return to power. The results are largely in line with predictions made in exit polls and opinion polls.

Polls in Tripura and Meghalaya were close. The Congress-left alliance and emergence of Tipra Motha had become a major threat to the BJP in government in Tripura, while the presence of too many parties in Meghalaya had made things complicated in that state. But NDA alliances are winning these two states too. All three states have 60 members in their assemblies.

In Nagaland, Naga Peoples Front, a major party in the state which ruled the state for several terms, has fared badly, leading in just 2 seats. It is notable that Neiphiu Rio was earlier in NPF, and became CM from the party in 2003, 2008 and 2013. In 2018, he formed the NDPP after splitting the NPF, taking away a large number of leaders and supporters from his former party.

Ahead of the 2018 assembly elections, BJP dumped NPF and formed an alliance with NDPP realising that most popular leaders from the regional party had moved to the new party, including Rio. While NPF had emerged as the largest party in 2018, it could not cross the halfway mark, and the BJP-NDPP managed to form the government with the support of two other MLAs.

Compared to the tight victory in 2018, this time the BJP-NDPP alliance has secured a comfortable majority, underlying a pro-incumbency verdict.

While the Congress party remains missing from Nagaland politics, Nationalist Congress Party has performed surprisingly well, winning 7 seats. National People’s Party, led by Meghalaya CM Conrad Sangma, has won 5 assembly seats in Nagaland. While NPP currently has an alliance with BJP for the current government in Meghalaya, both parties contested the polls separately.

As it is highly likely that NPP and BJP will come together along with UDP to form the next government in Meghalaya, NPP may join the government in Nagaland also, which will increase the numbers for the ruling alliance.

Apart from that, JD(U) has won 1, Lok Janshakti Party (Ram Vilas) has won 2, and the Republican Party of India (Athawale) has won 2 seats in Nagaland. There are four independent MLAs in the new Nagaland assembly. In the last outgoing assembly, there was one JD(U) MLA and he had supported the NDA government, and later the party unit in the state merged with NDPP. Given the past trend in the region, it is very much possible for other parties to join the NDA in the state.

While the Congress party had ruled the state for several terms in the past, it has become history in Nagaland. Just like the last elections, Congress didn’t win a single seat this time also.

The victory of NDA in Naganld underlines the massive improvements that have taken in the state in terms of infrastructure development and peace. While the state was synonymous with insurgent activities for a long time, the Modi govt has been able to control the situation. Naga peace talks are progressing well, and it is expected to bring lasting peace to the state. The Armed Forces Special Powers Act has been withdrawn from several districts in the state, signifying a decrease in insurgent activities.

Like the rest of the country, Nagaland also has seen a massive improvement in infrastructure. The state is now connected with modern wide highways, while railway lines are being laid up to Kohima, giving a massive boost to connectivity. Similarly, there are new job opportunities due to new industries that are being set up in the state.

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OpIndia Staff
OpIndia Staff
Staff reporter at OpIndia

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