Former Chief Minister Okram Ibobi Singh and 11 sitting MLAs are among the 40 candidates announced by the opposition Congress on Saturday for the Manipur assembly elections, scheduled to be held in two phases on February 27 and March 3.
According to the Congress’ first candidate list, Okram Ibobi Singh, who was the chief minister for a record 15 years (2002 to 2017) would contest from the Thoubal assembly seat while his son Surjakumar Okram would contest from the Khangabok seat and former Deputy Chief Minister and sitting MLA Gaikhangam would contest from Nungba constituency.
Manipur state Congress President Nameirakpam Loken Singh (Nambol), former Congress Presidents Gaikhangam (Nungba), T.N Haokip (Saikot), former Assembly Speaker Thokchom Lokeshwar Singh (Khundrakpam), Ratankumar Singh, who was recently appointed working president of Manipur Congress (Mayang Imphal) are also in the first list.
Several former ministers and ex-MLAs are also nominated by the Central Election Committee (CEC) of the Congress.
The CEC’s General Secretary and former Union Minister Mukul Wasnik in Delhi announced the candidates’ list where names of only two women candidates — Akoijam Miraibai Devi (Patsoi) and Thokchom Ithoibi Devi (Oinam) — find their places. Congress sources said that the party has been trying to ally with few local parties and based on the outcome of the ongoing talks, the next list of candidates would be announced.
The elections in BJP ruled Manipur would be held in two phases on February 27 and March 3 to elect the 60-members state assembly. The results will be declared on March 10.