A voter displays her voter identity card as others wait for their turn to cast their ballot during an assembly election at a polling booth in Aizawl, capital of Mizoram, December 2, 2008. (Image- Reuters)
As the elections in Mizoram inch closer, it is important to have a look at the key players for the polls that will take place on November 28.
The first name to find its mention will be current Chief Minister Lal Thanhawla. Thanhawla, belonging to Congress, will be fighting to retain control over the state after being in office for 10 years.
The 79-year-old leader, who has been the chief minister of Mizoram for five times, is one of the prominent names in the Mizoram political circles.
Before this, he was chief minister from 1984 to 1986 and from 1989 to 1998. He was elected to another term in the 2013 Mizoram Legislative Assembly election. This was the fifth time he was elected to the office of chief minister, which is a record in Mizoram.
His electoral constituencies are Serchhip and Hrangturzo. He successfully contested the general elections nine times — 1978, 1979, 1984, 1987, 1993, 2003, 2008 and 2013.
Congress’ 2013 win in Mizoram can be credited to Thanhawla’s efforts who won 34 seats in the 40-member legislative assembly, two seats more than the 2008 election. In comparison to Congress, the major opposition party, Mizo National Front (MNF), barely won five seats, while Mizoram People's Conference (MPC) won one seat.
Another Congress leader who could impact the upcoming elections in Mizoram is Lalrobiaka (Dampa). He sparked controversy due to his rising assets which grew by a whopping 2,406 percent in just five years, according to reports.
MIZO NATIONAL FRONT
From the opposition, Vanlalzawma belonging to the Mizo National Front could play an important role in the 2018 Mizoram polls. Party treasurer and also a former Lok Sabha member, Vanlalzawma will contest from Aizawl West-III seat again.
President of Mizo National Front (MNF) and former chief minister, Zoramthanga, will contest from Aizawl East-I Assembly constituency. He too will be a key player in the Assembly polls.
Apart from individuals, new parties too will play an important role in the state’s election.
A new group called Zoram Exodus Movement (ZEM), formed by retired priests, retired government officials and senior journalists, announced an alliance with the Zoram Nationalist Party (ZN) and the Mizoram People’s Conference (MPC) under the banner of Zoram People’s Movement (ZPM).
Anti-corruption watchdog People’s Right to Information and Development Implementation Society of Mizoram (PRISM) converted itself into a political party as People’s Representation for Identity and Status of Mizoram and retained its abbreviated form: PRISM.
The Maraland Democratic Front (MDF), earlier an ally of the Opposition Mizo National Front (MNF), merged with the BJP on October 25 along with its two members of district council (MDCs) in the Mara Autonomous District Council.
These new parties probably could make a difference in the results as well.Assembly Elections 2018: Read the latest news, views and analysis here