Manipur Elections 2017: Biren Singh to be sworn-in as first BJP chief minister in state

Imphal: Nongthombam Biren, who was elected leader of BJP Manipur legislature wing on Monday, will be sworn in as the 24th chief minister of Manipur on Wednesday. Biren Singh, MLA from Heingang constituency, will be the first BJP chief minister in the state.

Manipur Governor Dr Najima Heptulla will administer oath of office and secrecy to Biren Singh at Rajbhavan Imphal, said a BJP source.

Nongthombam Biren Singh was, on Monday, elected as the legislature party leader of BJP Manipur. He met the Manipur Governor Najma Heptulla in the evening to stake claim to form the government. He was unanimously elected leader of legislature wing in the presence of BJP central observer and union power minister Piyush Goel, union HRD minister and election in-charge of Manipur, Prakash Javadekar, MP and BJP North-East in charge, Prahlad Singh Patel.

Biren Singh. Photo courtesy: Amukhomba Ngangbam

Biren Singh. Photo courtesy: Amukhomba Ngangbam

Meanwhile, chief minister Okram Ibobi Singh also submitted his resignation papers to the Heptulla on Monday evening to facilitate the formation of a new government in the state.

Brief Profile of Biren Singh

From play-fields to corridors of power, Nongthombam Biren Singh, 56, has had a chequered career. Before joining active politics Biren Singh was a national football player while he was serving in the BSF. He has also worked in the media industry in the capacity of an editor. Now he is set to become the chief minister of the first BJP-led in the state.

After resigning from the BSF, Biren took up journalism and edited a morning vernacular daily, Naharolgi Thoudang. While he was an editor, Biren was sent to jail for publishing a statement made by the father of social worker Thounaojam Iboyaima.

He was arrested on 14 April, 2000 by the police from his office at Naharolgi Thoudang, Imphal, for publishing the speech made by Iboyaima, who allegedly encouraged extremist armed groups. Police said that the statement published in Biren’s newspaper was “seditious and anti-national.” Iboyaima Singh was also arrested.

Hailing from Luwangsangbam Mamang Leikai in Imphal East, Biren has been representing Heingang constituency since 2002. He was elected for the first time on the ticket of Democratic Revolutionary People’s Party and later on joined the Congress. He went on to become the minister for irrigation and flood control during the second term of Ibobi-led Secular Progressive Front coalition.

He retained his seat in 2007 elections and given the charge of Irrigation and Flood Control ministry and Youth Affairs and Sports.

Biren, who was once a close aid of Ibobi Singh, later on became a strong critic of the chief minister. He defected to BJP in October 2016. He is now a spokesperson and co-convener of BJP state election management committee.

He had a tough fight with sitting BJP law-maker Thongam Biswajit Singh for the top post. Finally Biswajit gave way for Biren to become the chief minister.

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Updated Date: Mar 14, 2017 16:50:10 IST

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