Guwahati: Nagaland Chief Minister Shurhozelie Liezietsu, who on Saturday tried to pass a Cabinet resolution suggesting dissolution of the state Assembly, is now facing serious rebellion in his party with more than 40 legislators of his party camping in a resort near Kaziranga and waiting for Nagaland Governor P.B. Acharya to return to Kohima.
The legislators have decided to re-elect former chief minister T.R. Zeliang as their new leader in place of present Chief Minister.
The ongoing political crisis had started precipitating soon after the decision of Mr Liezietsu’s to contest the bye-elections by asking his MLA son to resign and vacate seat for him.
His son Khriehu had resigned from this seat last month to enable his father to contest and be an elected member of the now 59-member Nagaland Assembly in order to continue in office.
Mr Liezietsu had won the Northern Angami-I seat in 2003 and 2008 but opted out in 2013 to make way for his son.
It was virtually an action replay of what happened before Mr Zeliang had to quit about four months back in February. A majority of NPF legislators had trooped into the same resort then.
If insiders are to be believed, former chief minister and MP Neiphiu Rio, who was camping in Kohima, has also extended his support to Mr Zeliang.
It is significant that Mr Zeliang was forced to quit because of violent protest of some civil society organisation backed by Mr Rio.
Informing that legislators of ruling Nagaland Peoples Front decided to challenge the leadership of present Chief Minister who also heads the NPF only after a formal consultation with the BJP leadership, sources said that the central BJP leadership has also thrown their weight behind Mr Zeliang.
Four BJP MLAs were camping in Kohima. When contacted BJP MLA Mhon Kikon told this newspaper, “It was the internal matter of NPF. Let them settle the leadership dispute.”
However, sources in the ruling party told this newspaper that Mr Rio was behind the present crisis. Mr Rio and Mr Zeliang were bitter rivals, but they have patched up after the mediation of some BJP leaders.
Earlier during the day, Mr Liezietsu in a Cabinet meeting in which only five ministers were present tried to pass a resolution recommending dissolution of the state Assembly and holding election of the state Assembly which is scheduled to take place in March 2018.
The NPF, with 47 legislators, is the dominant partner of the ruling Democratic Alliance of Nagaland. It has the support of four MLAs of BJP and eight independents....