Surprising but true. As many as five Nagaland Congress candidates have been forced to withdraw from the election race in the State due to ‘fund crunch’.
Now there are only 18 Congress candidates left in the fray for the 60-member Assembly elections slated for February 27 next.
The party had released a list of 23 candidates earlier on February 6. But as many as five contestants – Limawati Jamir from Aonglenden constituency, Hobeto Kiba from Zunheboto, Shami Angh from Longleng, Choakpa Konyak from Tobu and Aimong Lam from Noklak constituency, later withdrew their nomination.
A party insider said the withdrawal was primarily dur to shortage of funds in the State Congress unit.
Party insiders in the Nagaland Congress also alleged that the All India Congress Committee (AICC) is ‘least interested’ in the upcoming Assembly elections and desisted from pumping in funds.
Nagaland Congress president Kewe Khape Therie also went on record admitting that the ‘huge cash crunch’ had forced the party to initially field candidates on 23 seats only, according to a Hindustan Times report by Aurangzeb Naqshbandi.
“The AICC cannot fund us. This was conveyed to us by the general secretary (CP Joshi),” the report quoted Therie saying adding, “I think a party which is in opposition for 15 years cannot fight against a corrupt government without enough resources.”
Earlier, the Nagaland Congress had merged with the National People’s Party (NPP) led by Tura Lok Sabha MP Conrad Sangma.
The Nagaland Congress had also demanded that the NPP should issue tickets to six of its members.
Other demands of the Nagaland Congress were that its president should be accommodated as the NPP convenor or president-cum-election committee chairman and the posts of working president and other eight office-bearers of the party should be finalized by the NPP and accommodated in the party with their designations remaining the same as were in the Nagaland Congress.