ZPM To Form Govt In Mizoram, Trounce MNF (Ld)

(MENAFN- IANS) Aizawl, Dec 4 (IANS) The Zoram People's Movement (ZPM) headed by IPS officer-turned-politician Lalduhoma is likely to form the next government in Mizoram for the first time after trouncing the ruling Mizo National Front (MNF).

ZPM has won 15 seats and was leading in 12 seats in the 40-member Assembly. The ruling Mizo National Front (MNF) won one seat and was leading in nine seats.

A ZPM leader in Aizawl said that Lalduhoma is on his way to the capital city from Serchhip and then he would hold meetings with the elected MLAs and party leaders to decide on the formation of the new government.

As the counting of votes for the Mizoram Assembly elections is underway on Monday in 13 centers across the state, trends showed the opposition Congress leading in only one seat while the BJP has won one seat and was ahead in another.

ZPM's President and party's Chief Ministerial candidate Lalduhoma in a multi corner contest retained his Serchhip seat defeating his nearest MNF rival J. Malsawmzuala Vanchhawng by a margin of 2,983 votes while most of the prominent nominees of the party were leading in their respective seats.

The IPS officer-turned-politician Lalduhoma, who secured 8,314 votes, was elected to the state Assembly for the second consecutive time.

ZPM Chief Ministerial candidate Lalduhoma after winning his seat told the media that on Tuesday or Wednesday he would meet the state Governor to stake his claim to form the government and the swearing-in ceremony would be held within this month.

MNF candidate and Chief Minister Zoramthanga was trailing in the Aizawl East-1 seat where ZPM nominee Lalthansanga was leading.

Deputy Chief Minister and MNF candidate Tawnluia was also trailing in Tuichang seat, where ZPM's W. Chhuanawma was leading.

Several other MNF Ministers were also trailing in their respective seats.

State Congress President Lalsawta lost his Aizawl West-III seat to ZPM candidate V.L. Zaithanzama by a margin of 4,582 votes.

In the 2018 elections, MNF bagged 26 of the 40 member-Assembly, while the ZPM got eight seats. The Congress had bagged five seats and the BJP managed to win one seat.

The counting of votes for the Mizoram Assembly polls, held on November 7, began at 8 a.m. amid elaborate security arrangements in all 11 districts of the state.

Additional Chief Electoral Officer H. Lianzela said that initially postal ballots were counted and then the counting of votes polled through the Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) was taken up.

Over 4,000 officials, including women, were engaged in the counting process. These officials are posted at 40 counting halls under 13 centres in 11 districts, the official told IANS.

Director General of Police Anil Shukla said that adequate security measures were in place for the smooth conduct of the counting process. Adequate contingents of Central Armed Police Forces and Mizoram Armed Police have been deployed across the state to maintain law and order.

More than 80 per cent of the 8.57 lakh voters exercised their franchise to decide the electoral fate of 174 candidates, including 16 women.

The ruling Mizo National Front (MNF), the main Opposition Zoram People's Movement (ZPM) and the Congress had fielded candidates from all 40 seats while the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) contested four seats.

The BJP had fielded candidates on 23 seats with a special focus on linguistic minority inhabited areas, especially where the Reang and Chakma tribal communities are in good numbers in the voters' list. Besides them, 27 independent candidates were also in the fray.




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