Rivals are same, only their colours have changed

The two main contenders for Khurai Assembly seat are the same and the only difference is they have switched sides this time.

Last Updated: Jan 24, 2012, 11:00 AM IST

Khurai (Manipur): The two main contenders
for Khurai Assembly seat are the same and the only difference
is they have switched sides this time. Nothing uncommon in the
volatile politics of Manipur but will it bring a change of
fortune?

The prestigious constituency, just 4 km from state
capital Imphal, will witness a straight fight between sitting
MLA N Bijoy Singh of ruling Congress and Ningthoujam Bihari
Singh of opposition Manipur State Congress Party (MSCP).

N Bijoy Singh had won the seat in 2007 on an Manipur
Peoples Party (MPP) ticket defeating Bihari Singh of Congress
but now the bitter political rivals have swapped sides.

Bijoy Singh had won in 2007 securing 13,326 votes against
8,118 of Bihari Singh.

With a predominant Metei community voters, veteran Bijoy
Singh appears to enjoy advantage over his rival on the basis
of development works undertaken by the Congress government in
the last decade.

"There is absolute peace and people are moving around
freely which is not the case in other areas of the state",
Bijoy Singh says as he attends a "flag hoisting" ceremony of
Congress at Khurai playground.

Khurai boasts of the best road condition, second only to
Chief Minister Okram Ibobi Singh`s home constituency Thoubal.

"We have developed roads and improved civic amenities",
Bijoy Singh, a noted educationists and former Vice Chancellor
of Manipur University who joined Congress prior to the
election, said.

Bihari Singh, who resigned from Congress following
differences with the party, charged the government was "doing
nothing for the betterment of the people".

"The Congress government`s tall claims of development are
false. Prices of essential commodities have soared and the
poor people are the worst sufferers", he said.

The other contestants in the fray are RK Amusana of CPI
and L Brojendra Roy of Trinamool Congress.

PTI