First Up: NorthEast

Six states in the Northeast will go to the polls on April 7, 9 and 12...

Six states in the Northeast will go to the polls on April 7, 9 and 12, ahead of the rest of the country. The seventh state, Assam, completes polling on April 24. Of the 50 candidates in the fray, only four—three from Tripura and one from Arunachal Pradesh—have criminal cases pending  against them. Some 26 candidates have assets of over a crore of rupees.

1. Meghalaya

  • 10 candidates in fray in 2 constituencies (over 60 assembly constituencies)
  • The Congress, BJP, NCP in fray
  • Rs 128 crore: assets declared by Denis Siangshai (Independent); total eight crorepatis in the contest
  • Rs 2.30 crore: Assets of the lone woman candidate Ivoryna Shylla
  • Former Lok Sabha Speaker Purno A. Sangma contesting in place of daughter Agatha
  • Sangma has extended support for a separate Garoland


Spartan style Tripura CM Manik Sarkar arriving at a rally in Agartala. (Photograph by Abhishek Shah)

2. Tripura

  • 13 candidates in fray for two constituencies
  • Manik Sarkar, CM for four terms, still heads the only Left govt in the country
  • CPI(M)-led Left Front has rested both the sitting MPs and fielded new, younger candidates, J. Chowdhury (in pic) and S.P. Dutta
  • The contest here is with the Trinamool Congress, which has extended its Bengal rivalry: Tripura has roughly 60% Bengali population
  • In the 2013 assembly polls, Left Front had bagged 49 of the 60 seats

3.  Mizoram

  • Three candidates in fray for the one LS seat
  • It’s the only state in the Union where women outnumber male voters
  • The Congress has renominated the sitting MP C. Ruala
  • One opposing candidate is from the Aam Aadmi Party and the other is an Independent

4.  Arunachal Pradesh

  • 11 candidates in fray in the two constituencies
  • Assembly polls for the 60-member House being held simultaneously
  • 59 of the 60 assembly seats reserved for Scheduled Tribes
  • Death of Nido Tania, a student, in Delhi following a racial attack, now a hot potato poll issue
  • 11 Congress candidates have been elected unopposed to the assembly even before polling
  • Congress had won 42 assembly seats in 2009

5. Nagaland

  • 3 candidates in fray for the sole seat; voters to be toting India’s first electronic I-cards. All voter details will be encoded.
  • Nagaland People’s Party, an ally of the BJP, at present heads a coalition government in the state
  • NPP secured an absolute majority in the assembly elections last year
  • CM Neiphieu Rio contesting for the Lok Sabha
  • Defection of the former political advisor of the CM, Z. Lohe, to the Congress gives an edge to contest

6. Manipur

  • 10 candidates in fray for the sole constituency
  • Spirited campa­ign by the BJP has put Congress on the backfoot
  • The BJP has issued two manifestos, one for the hills and another for the plains
  • The BJP has pledged special category status to Manipur, also to implement clause 3 of Article 8 in the Manipur Merger Agreement of 1949
  • Congress MP Dr Th Meinya’s public confession that he had no substantial achievement to highlight puts the party on the backfoot

 

Poll Waltz 2014 One’s Own Voice
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