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regular-article-logo Wednesday, 29 May 2024

Mizoram: Nominations dip for November 7 Assembly elections

In all, 174 nominations have been filed for the polls, 38 less than the number in 2018

Umanand Jaiswal Guwahati Published 22.10.23, 06:54 AM
Representational image.

Representational image. File picture

There has been a fall in overall nominations for the November 7 Assembly polls in Mizoram compared to the last one in 2018.

In all, 174 nominations have been filed for the Mizoram polls, 38 less than the number in 2018.

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The BJP has fielded only 23 candidates this time, 16 less than in the last elections. The ruling Mizo National Front (MNF), the Opposition Zoram People’s Movement (ZPM) and the Congress are contesting all 40 seats.

In 2018, 212 nominations were filed of whom 209 remained in the fray after the withdrawal of nominations.

Although power in the state has swung between MNF and the Congress, the strong emergence of the ZPM in 2018 may upset calculations in 2023, political watchers said. The MNF won 26 seats, the ZPM eight and the Congress five in 2018. The Congress had won the Mizoram state polls in 2008 and 2013.

Political observer Dr H. Laldinmawia of Pacchunga University College told The Telegraph that although it appears to be a triangular contest since MNF, ZPM and Congress have fielded candidates in all the 40 seats, the “main” contenders are the MNF and the ZPM.

He also said the BJP has “understood” its real strength in the state and the party contesting fewer seats could mean a “gain” for the ZPM.

Mizo people are not inclined towards the BJP because Mizoram is a Christian-majority state.

The Aam Aadmi Party is debuting this year with four candidates. There are also 27 Independents in the fray.

The highest nominations are from Aizawl district (55) followed by Lunglei (27). Mizoram chief minister Zoramthanga filed his nomination on Friday, the last day of filing nominations.

Scrutiny of nominations was held on Saturday. The date of withdrawal is October 23.

Mizoram chief minister and MNF president Zoramthanga said on Friday that he was confident of the MNF retaining power by winning 25 or more seats because of the work they had done in the state despite financial hurdles.

The MNF is a partner in the BJP-led NDA and NEDA but has no truck with the BJP in the state.

BJP leader and Union minister Kiren Rijiju on Friday night made a jibe at Rahul Gandhi on X. "Rahul Gandhi also came to Mizoram and spoiled whatever little chances the Congress candidates had. Rahul Gandhi is a part-time politician so he doesn’t understand people’s issues. In a year, majority of the time, he stays abroad and comes back to India occasionally,” Rijiju wrote.

BJP national president J.P. Nadda is expected to visit the state on October 25 and Prime Minister Narendra Modi on October 30, if there were no last-minute changes, a BJP leader said.

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