In a 1st since 1963, Nagaland may elect 1st woman MLA this time

Until a few years ago, it was not an uncommon sight that the right to vote in villages was passed on by the villagers to their village chief. But times are now changing.

Published: 24th February 2023 09:02 AM  |   Last Updated: 24th February 2023 09:02 AM   |  A+A-

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Image used for representational purpose only.

Express News Service

DIMAPUR:  Nagaland, for the first time might be able to script history if it elects a woman as an MLA in the upcoming elections. Nagaland attained statehood in 1963 but never before a woman has candidate been elected to the state Assembly. The state has 49.79% female voters this election but only four women among the 183 candidates. 

The Christian-majority state, however, has got two women MPs till date. Back in 1977, Rano M Shaiza of the United Democratic Party had created history by becoming first woman MP in the state. She had defeated the then Chief Minister Hokishe Sema of Congress in the Lok Sabha elections. 

Almost 45 years later last year, Phangnon Konyak of the BJP was elected to the Rajya Sabha. It is not that the women in the state have not fought for political representation but the political parties have always shied away from representing them. Until a few years ago, it was not an uncommon sight that the right to vote in villages was passed on by the villagers to their village chief. But times are now changing.

Five women had contested the 2018 elections but none of them was successful. Hekani Jakhalu, Salhoutuonuo Kruse, both from Nationalist Democratic Progressive Party (NDPP), Kahuli Sema (BJP) and Rosy Thomson (Congress) are contesting in this elections. Jakhalu is contesting from Dimapur-III, Kruse from Western Angami, Sema from Atoizu and Thomson from Tening.

Jakhalu, the US-educated lawyer, is a social entrepreneur. Kruse has been into social services for more than two decades while Sema, who took voluntary retirement, served as the engineer-in-chief in the Nagaland PWD. Rosy Thomson joined the Congress during her college days in the late 1980s. S Phangnon Konyak made history in 2022 when she was elected as the first woman MP from Nagaland in more than four decades.

Local leader asks people not to vote for BJP, held
DIMAPUR: A local leader of extremist group National Socialist Council of Nagalim (NSCN-IM) was picked up by the Assam Rifles on Wednesday night after he had allegedly asked people not to vote in favour of Nagaland BJP chief Temjen Imna Along. Lanuwati Jamir, the NSCN-IM leader in the Ao region, is now in police custody. NSCN-IM said it would probe the matter.


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