Aizawl: Ruling Mizo National Front (MNF) on Wednesday unveiled its list of candidates and the constituencies they will contest in the forthcoming election to the 40-member Mizoram state legislature.
Chief Minister and party president Zoramthanga kicked off the campaign for the coming polls after declaring the party’s official candidates during a function at Vanapa Hall in Aizawl, attended by thousands of party workers from Aizawl district and nearby districts.
Chief Minister Zoramthanga will once again seek the mandate of the people from the Aizawl East – I seat, a constituency he successfully secured in the 2018 assembly polls. Meanwhile, Deputy Chief Minister Tawnluia will strive to maintain his hold on the Khawzawl assembly seat.
The MNF is set to contest all the 40 seats, with the majority of the incumbent legislators participating in the electoral fray. Notable exceptions include Home Minister Lalchamliana, who, in a laudable move, has chosen to step aside, making room for the younger generation. Similarly, Assembly Speaker Lalrinliana Sailo was omitted from the party’s list of contenders.
A significant shift occurred as Power Minister R Lalzirliana and Tourism Minister Robert Romawia Royte decided to change their electoral battlegrounds.
Lalzirliana, who emerged victorious in the 2018 elections from the Tawi assembly constituency, will now try his luck in the Aizawl North – I seat, which is currently held by former Deputy Speaker Vanlalhlana of the Zoram People’s Movement (ZPM). Meanwhile, Royte, who secured victory in the last election from Aizawl East – II, has set his sights on the Hachhek assembly seat, presently held by a Congress member.
With the exception of the two ministers exploring new territories, the remaining incumbent legislators have chosen to stand firm, contesting from the same constituencies where they triumphed in the 2018 elections.
The MNF has taken a noteworthy step towards inclusivity by fielding two women candidates. B Lalawmpuii, currently serving as an executive corporator in the Aizawl Municipal Corporation (AMC), will step into Royte’s shoes in the Aizawl East-II seat. Additionally, Prova Chakma, a newcomer to the political arena, will make her debut by contesting from the West Tupui assembly seat in South Mizoram’s Lunglei district.
Barring 25 sitting legislators, all the other MNF nominees represent fresh faces in the political spectrum, signaling an interesting and closely watched election on the horizon.