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Imphal, June 17, 2020
The BJP-led coalition government in Manipur headed by Chief Minister N. Biren Singh on Wednesday night fell into serious political trouble after three ruling party MLAs resigned and six other legislators withdrew support from the government.
After the latest political development, the strength of the Bharatiya Janata Party-led alliance government has been reduced to a minority in the 60-member Assembly, effective strength of which is 59 after Shyamkumar Singh of Andro Assembly constituency, who had defected to the BJP from Congress, was disqualified.
Led by Deputy Chief Minister Y. Joykumar, the four MLAs (including three ministers) belonging to the National People's Party (NPP), the lone Trinamool Congress member and an independent MLA from Jiribam withdrew their support from the BJP-led government, which has been facing political trouble since January this year.
With three BJP MLAs joining Congress, the latter now has 24 members in the Assembly even though former Chief Minister Okram Ibobi Singh claimed the effective strength of the party was now 27.
Manipur's Assembly elections in 2017 had yielded a hung verdict, with the Congress emerging as the single largest party with 28 MLAs in the house of 60. The BJP had 21 MLAs.
The Manipur High Court on June 8 ordered restraining seven Congress MLAs, who in 2017 joined the BJP, from entering the state Assembly till the Speaker's tribunal heard their disqualification case.
The seven Congress MLAs had joined the BJP as it was short of 10 MLAs to form the government in the 60-member house after the 2017 Assembly polls.
However, the BJP formed the government with the support of rebel Congress MLAs, apart from the National People's Party (NPP), headed by Meghalaya Chief Minister Conrad K. Sangma, and the Naga People's Front.