After assuming office of the Chief Minister of Nagaland, Neiphiu Rio is now busy lobbying in the national capital to consolidate his government where the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) needs to play a pivotal role.
Rio accompanied by Deputy Chief Minister Y Patton, Cabinet ministers and state BJP and Nationalist Democratic Progressive Party (NDPP) leaders are camping in New Delhi holding series of meetings with several central leaders and ministers.
The delegation also met Vice President, M Venkaiah Naidu.
The Chief Minister and his colleagues also met Prime Minister Narendra Modi and urged upon him for construction of Ciethu Airport near Kohima; continuation of the Special Assistant Fund (SPF) introduced during UPA government and obtaining the special package for Eastern Nagaland People’s Organization (ENPO) announced by Modi during his election campaign in Tuensang.
The delegation also met Union Finance Minister, Arun Jaitley, at his office, Union Minister of State for Housing & Urban Affairs, Hardeep Singh Puri, and Union Minister of State for Home Affairs, Kiren Rijiju, at his residence in Delhi.
Rio who took over as the Nagaland Chief Minister for the fourth time on March 8, had to face series of hiccups since being invited to form the government beginning with choosing the Cabinet followed by delay in allocation of portfolios.
Now the tough task that lies ahead for Rio is to decide the fate of 22 elected members for appointment as advisors in the rank of Cabinet or minister of state.
Rio went on record stating that he will ‘not go against the law of the land’ by appointing parliamentary secretaries.
The delegation led by Rio camping in New Delhi also held consultative meetings with constitutional experts and legal luminaries over the issue of appointment of elected members as advisors.
Rio also held a closed door one-to-one meeting with state advocate general Ram Gopal on Thursday evening over the issue of appointment of advisors in the State.