In a political shift, six members of the Chakma Autonomous District Council (CADC) have switched allegiance to the Zoram People's Movement (ZPM), according to BJP sources. Notably, the defections include five members from the BJP and one from the ruling Mizo National Front (MNF), with Council chairman Kali Kumar Tongchangya of the MNF among those making the move, as reported by PTI.
The five BJP members had initially left the MNF to join the BJP before the November assembly polls. Speculations are rife that additional defections might occur, with sources suggesting that some Congress members could leave the party to join the ZPM, potentially leading to a ZPM-led Chakma council.
The CADC polls on May 9 resulted in a fractured mandate, with the MNF emerging as the largest single party, securing 10 seats. The BJP won five seats, and the Congress secured four. The political landscape saw changes when the Congress won the Rengkashya seat, where polling was countermanded due to the death of a BJP candidate amid a clash between BJP and MNF workers.
Despite this, three BJP and two Congress members later joined the MNF, forming an MNF-led council. However, the incumbent chief executive member Rasik Mohan Chakma, elected from the Tuichawng seat in the November 7 polls, is reportedly contemplating whether to resign as both MDC and CEM, according to sources.
The MNF currently holds power in the 20-member council with 11 seats. It's worth noting that the Chakma Autonomous District Council was established in 1972 under the Sixth Schedule of the Constitution to represent the Chakma tribe in Mizoram.