Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday encouraged the people of Mizoram, especially the youth and first-time voters, to participate in the electoral process and strengthen the democratic festival as Mizoram headed to the polls.
In a 'X' post, the Prime Minister stated, "I call upon the people of Mizoram to vote in record numbers. I particularly urge the young and first time voters to exercise their franchise and strengthen the festival of democracy.”
Earlier on the same day, Union Home Minister Amit Shah also called upon the youth to come out and vote in substantial numbers. He posted 'X', saying, "I urge our sisters and brothers in Mizoram, especially the youth, to come out and vote in large numbers. Each and every vote will lay the foundation of a developed and prosperous Mizoram.”
Meanwhile, Mizoram Chief Minister Zoramthanga encountered a minor issue with an electronic voting machine, preventing him from casting his vote during the early hours of the Mizoram assembly elections. He mentioned, "Because the machine was not working. I was waiting for some time. But since the machine could not work I said that I will visit my constituency and I will vote after the morning meet,"
The Chief Minister expressed confidence that there wouldn't be a hung Assembly in Mizoram and that his party would form the government. He stated, "It will not be a hung Assembly. It will be an MNF government. I have full confidence in that." he said.
The Mizoram Assembly elections began on Tuesday, with the counting of votes scheduled for December 3. The voting period spans from 7 am to 3 pm
A total of 174 candidates are competing in the elections, with 8,51,895 registered electors in Mizoram, comprising 4,12,969 males, 4,38,925 females, and 1 third gender. Additionally, there are 4,973 service voters and 50,611 first-time voters aged 18-19. Mizoram boasts a high voter sex ratio of 1,063 and an electoral population (EP) ratio of 63.27.
The state has 1,276 polling stations, with 525 in urban areas and 751 in rural areas. Furthermore, 2,058 votes have been cast via home voting, and 7,497 votes through postal ballots at designated facilitation centers.
In the 2018 assembly elections, the Mizo National Front (MNF) secured 26 seats and emerged as the victor, ending the ten-year rule of the Congress government. The Zoram Peoples Movement (ZPM) won eight seats, positioning itself as a strong contender. The Congress secured five seats, and the BJP gained its first seat in the state.
Incumbent Chief Minister Zoramthanga, who is also the president of the MNF, is seeking re-election from the Aizawl East I constituency. The State Congress Chief, Lalswata, is contesting from Aizawl West 3, and Lalduhoma, the founder and president of the Zoram Nationalist Party, is running in the Serchhip constituency.