After losing Arunachal Pradesh to intra-party rift, the Congress is hit by dissidence in another north-eastern State. This time, it’s Manipur where the rift has pushed the Congress-led government of Ibobi Singh into a crisis. About 25 rebel leaders have hinted at toppling the government and crossing over to the BJP.
Urging the rebels not to “hurt” the party ahead of the Assembly elections next year, Congress president Sonia Gandhi has assured them in a meeting that their demands for a Cabinet reshuffle and sacking some Ministers would be considered.
In Arunachal, the rebels had made several attempts to meet Ms. Gandhi and party vice-president Rahul Gandhi before coming out in open revolt against the Nabam Tuki’s regime. Since both Ms. Gandhi and her son, Rahul, showed no interest in meeting them, they went ahead and toppled Mr. Tuki’s regime with the support of some BJP MLAs.
The rebellion in Manipur carries similar signs, with about 25 Congress dissidents seeking the removal of PCC president, Gaikhangam, who also serves as the State’s deputy chief minister.
A dissident leader said after Ms. Gandhi promised them that she will “look into the matter,” they assured her that they would work for the victory of the party in 2017 elections and also for the return of Okram Ibobi Singh as the State’s Chief Minister for the fourth time.