After BJP snapped 15-year-old ties with Naga People’s Front (NPF) on Monday, TR Zeliang stepped down as Nagaland Chief Minister along with Council of Ministers on Tuesday afternoon.
“After coming to know of the decision of BJP severing ties with NPF, I am submitting the resignation of the Council of Ministers headed by me today with a request to accept the same with immediate effect,” Zeliang said in his resignation letter to Nagaland Governor PB Acharya.
The outgoing Chief Minister also assured the Naga people that the NPF would extend full support to the new government wherever the action of the government is in the larger interest of the Naga people apart from playing a constructive role of opposition in furthering the overall cause of the Nagas.
He said after 27 newly elected NPF MLAs at a meeting on March 4 unanimously chose him to be the Leader of the NPF Legislature Party in newly elected Assembly, he met the Governor in Kohima on the same day to stake claim to form the next government since NPF was the single largest party which had pre-poll alliance with JD(U) and NPP. A letter of support to that effect was submitted to the Governor, he added.
Zeliang also informed he proposed to the BJP leadership – the Prime Minister and BJP president- in separate communications on March 3 to know the stand of BJP pertaining to formation of coalition Government as in the past 15 years.
However, he said, he along with his Council of Ministers decided to resign after knowing BJP’s decision to snap ties with NPF.
Stating that the nation under the leadership of Narendra Modi is on a new developmental trajectory, Zeliang said Nagaland cannot be left out of the vigorous developmental process.
“An honourable and acceptable settlement to the Naga Political issue, in pursuance of the Framework Agreement signed on August 3, 2015, is the fervent wish of the Naga people as a whole. A durable peace in the state may be possible only under a united aegis in the Legislative Assembly,” the outgoing Chief Minister stated.
He added that the fact that the electorate in Nagaland had given 27 seats to the NPF is a factor that has to be taken into account in all political processes including those of development and peace in Nagaland.
Zeliang profusely thanked the electorate of Nagaland for giving NPF a massive mandate with 27 seats making it the single largest party in the13th Nagaland House. He also expressed deep sense of gratitude to his Cabinet colleagues for their unflinching support and cooperation in both good and difficult times as well as in governance for the past four years.