2 BJP ministers and 6 MLAs join NPP ahead of polls in Arunachal Pradesh

Itanagar: In a major blow to the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) ahead of the Lok Sabha elections, two sitting BJP ministers and six MLAs in Arunachal Pradesh have joined National People’s Party (NPP) on Tuesday.

Home Minister Kumar Waii and Tourism Minister Jarkar Gamlin shifted their loyalty along with the six legislators after BJP denied them tickets.

Waii, however, said that BJP is a non-secular and anti-religion party which has disillusioned them. “If BJP was the right party, I would have been working for it. BJP says that for them, the country is first, party second and person third. But, they are doing dynasty politics. This is a secular state. BJP is an anti-religion party,” said K Waii.

The NPP is ruling Meghalaya in alliance with BJP. It has decided to field 40 candidates in the Arunachal Pradesh assembly polls.

On March 17, BJP released a list of 54 candidates for a total strength of the 60-member assembly. Lok Sabha and Assembly polls will be held simultaneously in the state on April 11.

NPP’s national general secretary Thomas Sangma clarified that his party will not form an alliance with anyone.

“I am delighted to welcome eight sitting Ministers and MLAs to our party. National People’s Party will not form the alliance with anyone. BJP’s ideology is not right. It is not a secular party,” said Thomas Sangma.

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