Meghalaya Polls: Candidates File Nominations

Election Observers from the Centre today arrived in Meghalaya to monitor the electioneering processes in the state which goes to poll on February 23 even as 10 companies of paramilitary forces are arriving here tomorrow, officials said.

A total of 12 candidates, including two cabinet ministers, filed their nomination papers on the first day of filing of nominations.

Thirteen expenditure observers dispatched by the Election Commission are due to arrive and they should be here while about 10 companies of paramilitary forces are scheduled to arrive by tomorrow, Chief Election Officer P Naik told reporters.

He said about 20 other general observers would be arriving after scrutiny of papers on February 7.

Lone woman legislator, who is also a cabinet minister in the Congress-led government in the state, filed her nomination papers today. She represents the erstwhile Laitumkhrah constituency in the city.

Her colleague in the cabinet, UDP MLA from Mawphlang, J A Lyngdoh also filed his nomination papers including five others in East Khasi hills district including the father-daughter duo – Pynshai Manik Syiem and Teilina Thangkhiew – who are contesting as independent candidates from Mawphlang and Mylliem constituency respectively.

UDP candidate Bristol Kharbuli also filed his nomination papers from Sohiong constituency, the home constituency of Home Minister H D R Lyngdoh.

Updating on the other districts, State Chief Electoral Officer (CEO), P Naik said, three candidates from West Garo hills district, and one each from Ri Bhoi district and South West Garo hills district have filed their nomination papers in their respective District Election Offices.

Altogether, 11 districts and four civil sub-divisions in the state are all gear up for the upcoming Assembly elections.

No one filed their nominations in East Garo hills, West Jaintia hills, West Khasi hills, North Garo hills, South West Garo hills and South Garo hills district, election officials said.

Similarly, there was no filing of nomination papers in four sub-divisions - Mairang, Sohra, Amlarem and Dadenggiri- they said.

The CEO also projected that more than 400 candidates are likely to file their nomination papers this year.

338 candidates contested in the 2008 Assembly elections. Meanwhile, 11 MLAs have so far tendered their resignation to the Assembly Speaker Charles Pyngrope.

Leader of Opposition Conrad Sangma and his brother James Sangma also resigned as MLAs as they prepare for the February 23 poll.

The last date of filing of nomination papers will be on February 6 and the scrutiny has been scheduled on February 7.