A day after the current chief minister of Arunachal Pradesh, Pema Khandu, was suspended by his own party PPA (People’s Party of Arunachal), he along with 33 of his supporters joined BJP. In an emergency meeting called by Chief Minister Pema Khandu on 31st December, he and his supporting MLA decided to join BJP. They were supported by 12 BJP and 2 independent MLAs. The entire team went and met state Assembly speaker T.N Thongdok and submitted their application regarding the same. Amid the turmoil the local party is facing, the PPA went ahead and suspended four more MLAs from the party depleting its numbers in the Assembly. PPA blamed BJP of highjacking the democratic process and buying its MLAs from the back door.
The political upheaval in the state began in November 2015 and lasted till the end of the last day of 2016. Pema Khandu on July 17 had sworn in as the chief minister of the state. He was the third chief minister in the year 2016. Crisis again followed when PPA suspended Pema Khandu and six other MLAs on the charges of anti-party activities and making space for BJP.
The way PPA cheated legislative members,more than 2/3 MLAs decided to join BJP & hence this decision is a blessing in disguise: Pema Khandu pic.twitter.com/P0bTRzlzMb
— ANI (@ANI_news) December 31, 2016
PPA appointed Takam Pario, one of the richest MLA of Arunachal was chosen as the new CM. However, the divide within the party didn’t end with this move. PPA wanted Pario to take over as the new leader of the legislature party, while Khandu refused to step down.
This is not the first time when the BJP has formed a government in the state. BJP had come to power in the state pretty much in the similar fashion in 2003 also. Back then former chief minister Gegong Apang leader of the ruling United Democratic Front left Congress with his supporters and merged with BJP.
This was the first time the BJP had ever ruled a state in north-eastern India but in a few months after the BJP-ruled National Democratic Alliance lost power at the centre during 2004 elections, Apang again returned to the Indian National Congress. Meanwhile, this is the second time that BJP government has taken charge in Arunachal, but the unpredictable politically volatile situation still persists in the state.