Khonsa West seat by-polls Electioneering yet to pick up

By A O News Service

ITANAGAR, Oct 05: Though hardly two weeks are left but electioneering is yet to pick up for Khonsa West seat by-polls in Tirap district of Arunachal Pradesh, possibly due to Tirap is one of the three insurgency infested districts besides Changlang and Longding bordering Myanmar.

Electioneering has never been a high pitch affair in this district, Tirap deputy commissioner-cum returning officer P N Thungon told this daily over telephone from Khonsa. However, the atmosphere is peaceful with deployment of large number of security forces to ensure peaceful conduct of elections, he added.

Chakat Aboh, wife of slain sitting National People’s Party MLA Tirong Aboh, and Azet Homtok, are in the fray for the by-polls scheduled on October 21 next as independent candidates Yumsem Matey and Wangchu Lowang withdrew from the race on Thursday last.

However, it is a political history with two independent candidates contesting any election for the first time since this state graduated to parliamentary democracy with the conduct of first general election to 30-member house of then union territory on 25th February 1978.

State’s five political parties, including the ruling BJP on Sept 28 last had chosen Chakat as consensus candidate and not to file any candidate. By-election to the assembly constituency was necessitated after Tirong Aboh and 10 others including his son were assassinated allegedly by NSCN (IM) militants at Bogapani on May 21 last. However, he had won the election whose result was announced on May 23.

There are total 10,186 electors including 5226 females who will caste their franchise in 23 polling stations and considering the sensitivity of the constituency all precautionary arrangements have been made to prevent any untoward, joint chief electoral officer D J Bhattacharjee said.

Moreover, Election Commission of India has deputed Monoranjan Dutta and Parneet Singh as general observer and expenditure observer respectively to oversee the poll process, he said, adding the elections would hopefully be conducted peacefully as Nirbachan Bhawan has sought support of all political parties.

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