The Congress may reach out to the Naga People’s Front (NPF) for an informal understanding in some seats for the February 27 Nagaland assembly polls, sources in the party said. The Congress on Tuesday came out with its list of 23 candidates for elections to the 60-member Assembly. The state’s ruling NPF has announced it will contest in 58 assembly segments.
The BJP has already tied up with the newly-formed Nagaland Democratic Progressive Party (NDPP) and has fielded candidates in 20 seats. The NDPP, led by former chief minister Neiphiu Rio, will have its candidates in 40 constituencies. Wednesday is the last date of filing nominations for the elections. The nominations can be withdrawn before February 12.
“The NPF has already declared candidates for almost all the seats. However, there is still time left for the candidates to withdraw nominations. “We will try and reach out to the NPF leaders to have an understanding in some seats to take on the NDPP-BJP combine,” a party leader said, requesting anonymity.
Till Tuesday, 22 candidates from NPF, BJP, NDPP and JD (U) had filed their nominations. Until about a week ago, nearly all political parties, including the Congress, had jointly decided against contesting the elections. This was in response to the demand by tribal organisations in the state for a solution to the protracted Naga political issue first. However, that uncertainty is virtually over with candidates from various parties filing their nominations.