Shillong, April 4 IANS | 7 months ago

Former Goa chief minister Luizinho Faleiro Friday exuded confidence that the northeastern states would contribute more seats to the Congress kitty, and cautioned the electorate in the region not to fall prey to the "evil designs" of the BJP.

"The people of northeast have always supported the Congress in the past. I am sure this time again the people from your region would come and give us the maximum number of MPs," Faleiro told IANS in Shillong, the state capital of Meghalaya.

"We are going to get the maximum number of seats in Assam, Mizoram, Manipur, and Arunachal Pradesh," he said, adding that the merger of the Manipur State Congress Party (MSCP) with the Congress would give the boost to the Congress.

On Thursday, top leaders of the MSCP, along with five legislators led by party president Y. Mani Singh, merged their party with the ruling Congress government headed by Chief Minister Okram Ibobi Singh in Imphal.

"Not only in Manipur, we are confident that our sitting MPs -- Takam Sanjoy and Ninong Ering -- from Arunachal Pradesh would retain their parliamentary seats in the Lok Sabha since 11 of the 60 Congress candidates contesting the assembly polls have already won the elections uncontested," the Congress general secretary said.

Of the 25 Lok Sabha seats in the region - 14 in Assam, two each in Tripura, Meghalaya, Manipur and Arunachal Pradesh and one each in Mizoram, Nagaland and Sikkim - the Congress secured 13 in the last parliamentary polls in 2009 while the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) got four seats.

The Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) won Tripura's two seats, while one seat each was bagged by regional parties Asom Gana Parishad, All India United Democratic Front and Bodo People's Front in Assam, and the Naga People's Front and the Sikkim Democratic Front (SDF) secured the lone parliamentary seat each from Nagaland and Sikkim.

The Congress is in power in Manipur, Mizoram, Assam, Arunachal Pradesh and Meghalaya while the CPI-M-led Left Front rules Tripura. The NPF-led Democratic Alliance of Nagaland is ruling in Nagaland and the SDF in Sikkim.

Stating that people of the region reposed faith in the Congress because of its secular credentials, Faleiro cautioned the voters in the region not to fall prey to the "evil designs" of the BJP.

"The BJP wants to impose the Gujarat model. In that model we have a rot called the Godhra riot, where you have the worst stink called social disharmony and dirt called divisiveness," he said.

(Posted on 04-04-2014)

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