IFP Editorial: The Manipur election 2022 results will decide the fate of 265 candidates, who contested in the 60 assembly constituencies in 16 districts of the state, which was conducted in two phases on February 28 and March 5 and two repolls that was conducted on March 5 and March 8.
Updated 9 Mar 2022, 8:01 pm
Come Thursday, the lock on EVM machines will be opened and votes counted revealing the new MLAs of the Manipur Legislative Assembly 2022.The exit polls conducted by different news channels in partnership with various professional agencies predict BJP as a clear winner with either the highest number of seats or absolute majority, thereby giving a free run towards forming the next government in the state. Congress says, exit polls can go wrong and it has deputed at least four AICC observers including Mukul Wasnik to conduct the post poll strategy and government formation. They are not that confident of bettering the BJP numbers, but they are looking for partners to form the government as BJP’s allies in the present government had fought the elections on their own.
Both Conrad K Sangma-led NPP and Naga Peoples Front are looking to be kingmakers in the hope that this election would conjure up a hung assembly. Predictions apart, ground assessment of the elections held in two phases reveals a strong BJP surging ahead of other political parties. As to the question of who would be leading the BJP government, all indications point towards N Biren Singh returning once again as chief minister in the event of BJP getting a majority of its own.
Chief Minister N Biren Singh had passed the litmus test of successful leadership after the success in both Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha elections. After the resignation of three party MLAs as engineered by the wily Okram Ibobi, BJP was reduced to 18 from the original 21. With the results of by-elections and a favourable High Court verdict, the BJP tally has now increased to 23 in a house of 60 with an effective strength of 53.
The chief minister has a sizeable number and full backing from the top leadership of BJP, his political stature in the party has greatly increased. Despite the BJP leadership not announcing a CM face for the 2022 elections, Biren Singh went full throttle into the campaign even addressing small gatherings in various constituencies in view of Covid-19 restrictions.
As the state eagerly awaits the results of the 12th Manipur Assembly election that ended with a 89.3 per cent voter turnout, the Election Commission is all set to conduct the counting of votes on March 10 at 41 counting halls that are spread over 12 counting centres across the state. The election results will decide the fate of 265 candidates, who contested in the 60 assembly constituencies in 16 districts of the state, which was conducted in two phases on February 28 and March 5 and two repolls that was conducted on March 5 and March 8.
The counting process will start from 8 am, with the counting of postal ballots. It will be succeeded by counting of votes polled in EVM from 8.30 am onwards in all the 41 counting halls notified for the purpose. The entire process of counting in addition to the ROs will also be supervised by the 41 general observers appointed by the ECI. The process of counting will also be webcast to the district control rooms and also the state control room at the CEO, Manipur office.
After the votes are counted, there will certainly be giant killers who are likely to defeat deeply entrenched candidates according to ground reports. Violence and incidents of booth rigging apart, this election will bring forward a new crop of political leaders. Till then, let us wait for the verdict 2022.