As Nagaland gears up to hold its first Urban Local Bodies (ULBs) elections in two decades, a total of 523 candidates remain in the fray for the polls scheduled on June 26. According to data provided by the State Election Commission (SEC) on June 19, at least 79 candidates for the state’s three municipal councils (Kohima, Dimapur, and Mokokchung) and 36 town councils have withdrawn their candidatures from the initial 669 (including 238 women) who filed nominations.

The SEC’s list of contesting candidates indicated that the highest number of aspirants is from Dimapur Municipal Council (DMC) with 56 candidates. There are 23 wards under DMC, and candidates from two wards (Ward 5 and 15) have been deemed elected unopposed. Kohima Municipal Council (KMC) follows with 35 candidates, where contestants from five wards (1, 2, 8, 11, and 15) have been declared elected unopposed out of 19 wards.
64 Wards Uncontested

The SEC informed that 64 wards had only one contender each and thus declared them elected unopposed in the civic polls. The highest number was from Chiephobozou Town Council, where all candidates from 9 wards were declared uncontested. This was followed by six for Tuli Town Council and five each for KMC and Mokokchung Town Council.

Nagaland ULB Elections 2024
Election Observer & Additional Secretary, S Tainiu Khiamniungan along with other officials and elected Candidates during the handing over of winning certificates to the ULB Election at Chiephobozou, Kohima on 18 June 2024. (IA Chiephobozou)

Party-wise, of the 64 uncontested candidates, the Nationalist Democratic Progressive Party (NDPP) had the highest number at 45, while the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) had 7. The Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) followed with 5, while the Indian National Congress had 3. There were also 2 candidates from the Naga People’s Front and 2 Independent candidates.

Zero Candidates in Eastern Nagaland ULBs
All 61 intending candidates in ULBs located in the six districts of Eastern Nagaland—Mon, Tuensang, Longleng, Kiphire, Noklak, and Shamator—have withdrawn their nominations in response to a poll abstention call by the Eastern Nagaland People’s Organization (ENPO), effectively ruling out any electoral exercise in these six districts.

The ENPO has had a standing resolution since February to refrain from participating in any central or state election over the autonomous Frontier Nagaland Territory (FNT) issue. These six districts also abstained from participating in the recently held parliamentary elections. The resolution was taken to protest against the failure to settle the Union government’s offer for the creation of an autonomous Frontier Nagaland Territory through the Union Ministry of Home Affairs.

Despite the ENPO’s call for poll abstention, 61 intending candidates, including 23 women, had filed nominations in Mon, Kiphire, Longleng, and Shamator districts. However, as scrutiny and withdrawal of names came to a close on Tuesday, 59 candidates withdrew their papers while two were rejected during scrutiny.

According to a Hindustan Times report, the candidates had to withdraw their papers under duress and pressure from their respective tribal bodies, which are affiliate units of ENPO. Representing the tribes of Konyak, Chang, Phom, Yimkhiung, Khiamniungan, Sangtam, Tikhir, and eastern Sümi, ENPO has over 400,000 voters and 20 assembly seats. Under the state’s ULB framework, the six districts have 14 town councils.

Mokokchung Times

3 thoughts on “Nagaland ULB Elections 2024: 523 contestants in fray, 64 elected unopposed; ENPO to abstain”
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