Senior leader quits Nagaland Cong

Kohima, Jan. 9: Nagaland Congress has suffered a jolt close on the heels of the state BJP facing a similar situation after one of its senior leaders quit the party.

The Congress suffered the setback in the midst of a damage-control exercise after former state unit president and CLP leader Chingwang Konyak decided to quit, criticising the manner and style of functioning of the party.

Former Lok Sabha member Konyak told The Telegraph that he had not yet decided on his next course of action. "I will take time to decide which party to join."

The Congress, however, did not rule out disciplinary action against the veteran Naga leader, with state unit president S.I. Jamir saying they would discuss what action would be taken against Konyak.

The Congress was also irked by Konyak's presence in the Joint Legislators' Forum meeting convened by Speaker Kiyanielie Peseyie yesterday at Chumukedima, 12km from Dimapur. The meeting was, however, cancelled at the eleventh hour, as representatives of other political parties did not turn up.

The Forum consists of 60 MLAs but yesterday the Speaker had convened a meeting of all political parties.

Konyak said he had no information about party leaders boycotting the meeting. "It's okay if they take action. I don't mind," he said.

He said his partymen did not recognise his contributions to the party. "We nurtured the Congress, and today, they do not want to recognise that," he said.

Konyak, who has been in state politics since the 1960s, is a prominent Naga leader from eastern Nagaland, which is currently demanding a separate state ' Frontier Nagaland.

Jamir, while hinting at disciplinary action against Konyak, said the latter would not contest elections.

Konyak, too, said he would not contest elections this time, adding that he would tender his resignation right after the Election Commission announced the Assembly poll dates.

Konyak said several prominent leaders had left the party recently, adding that this spoke volumes about the Congress.

Asked whether his quitting the party would have any impact on the Congress in the four districts of Tuensang, Kiphire, Mon and Longleng, he said he did not want to comment. It was up to the people to decide, he said.

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