Analytical Study Of Scheduled Tribe MLA’s From Reserved Constituencies Of Manipur In India 1967-2022

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Dr. Rahul Bavge , Dr. Asim Khapare


As per the census of India-2011, the population of Schedule Tribe in Manipur is 40.88% of the entire population which is politically decisive. Twenty out of sixty seats of state legislative assembly and one seat out of two Loksabha seats are reserved for ST in Manipur. Political parties in Manipur have to take into consideration this representation of STs for winning elections and sustaining in power thereafter. Recently Meitei, which is a dominant community in Manipur, is aggressively putting its demand for getting ST status. This has created a sort of upheaval in the political world in the form of reaction from the existing STs in the state.

            During the period 1967 to 2022 Manipur had thirteen state legislative assembly elections. A total of 744 MLAs were elected and most importantly 241 were the MLAs elected from reserved constituencies for STs. Recently better electoral performance in the reserved constituencies of ST category by Congress party in 2002 and 2012 and by BJP in 2017 has underlined the importance of this category in the electoral politics.

            During the period 1967-2022 Congress won 39.18% of seats reserved for ST out of total 222 and because of this only Congress ruled for longer period in Manipur. Whereas Independent candidates were almost 20.72% of the total 241 seats reserved for STs in Manipur which is second largest representation of ST category overall. Most of these were rebelled leaders of congress elected as independents. If we club them, the winning percentage of Congress ST MLAs and independent ST MLAs together is around 60% of the total reserved seats for ST category. The rest of all parties could win only 40% seats reserved for this category in Manipur. These parties in a way have failed in keeping pace with ST category as Congress did and remained in power race in Manipur for a longer period. BJP won 2017 and 2022 assembly elections in Manipur and the percentage of ST category MLAs in the same underlines the integral role of these reserved constituencies in the state politics.

            This article focuses on the electoral performance of different political parties in ST reserved constituencies in Manipur during the period 1967-2022. The dynamics of ST representation, its analysis and changing trends have been the key issues of discussion in this paper. 

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