Thursday, April 18, 2024
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Ri-Bhoi pre-poll analysis: Cong, UDP to get two seats each

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NONGPOH: With barely a few days remaining for the polling day of MDCs, the present pre-poll surveys in the five constituencies in Ri Bhoi District show that the United Democratic Party (UDP) and the Indian National Congress (INC) will walk away with two seats each out of the five while one seat will be bagged by independent candidate.
However political observers opine that the margin of victory in all the five constituencies will be a few hundred votes only as the contests are expected to be very close.
Interesting Mawhati contest between SHNLC cadre and others
The only constituency in the district where the sitting MDC is contesting, Mawhati, will witness a neck to neck contest between INC candidate R B Shadap and SHNLC cadre James Sylliang who are contesting as independent candidates.
However, Shadap has an upper hand over Sylliang as he is a prominent church elder and president of the SRS, Ri Bhoi District while the biggest drawback for Sylliang is that he is a SHNLC, which is not digestible for certain section of the voters and moreover during his time in HNLC he was of a low rank unlike the present MLA Julius Dorphang who was the chairman of the HNLC. After he surrendered, he was again arrested on July 22, 2005 on extortion charges by Mawlai Police Station but the case ended that year itself.
Others in the fray are sitting MDC Otril Pamshong, UDP candidate B Tmung and HSPDP candidate Khrawpyrkhat Marwein.
Congress infighting to affect results in Umsning
In the newest constituency of the KHADC, Umsning, former KSU North Khasi Hills District president Donkupar Sumer of the United Democratic Party (UDP) has a greater edge over the other candidates as he recently unsuccessfully contested in the MLA election from the same constituency.
Moreover, there is infighting in the Congress camp due to denial of party ticket for senior Umsning Congress leader Carlos Kharkongor who is now on the fray as an independent candidate.
According to party sources, Umsning Congress MLA Dr. Celestine Lyngdoh is backing Kharkongor as his choice of candidate D Pale did not get INC ticket as Ryntathiang who was backed by MPCC president D D Lapang and Jirang MLA L Mylliemngap was allotted the ticket.
Sumer is set to witness a triangular contest with INC candidate Dipul Ryntathiang and Kharkongor while another independent candidate H Marbaniang is also on the fray.
Khymdeit holds edge in Nongpoh
Turning to the prestigious Nongpoh seat, lady candidate from UDP MDC Rona Khymdeit is in a neck to neck contest with INC candidate Augustine Wahlang. Khymdeit who is one of the leading advocates in the district might make it as the first lady MDC as past trends reflects that the electorates do not choose MDC of the same political party as of the MLA.
Here too, there is a division of Congress votes due to the allotment of ticket while HSPDP candidate B Nongmalieh is also trying to make a difference.
Inconclusive outcome in Umroi and Jirang
While in the Umroi seat, Independent candidate Michael Dauglus Syiem, is neck to neck with his closest rival INC candidate Albinus Lyngdoh. Notably, George Lyngdoh son of former chief minister Late E K Mawlong is also backing Syiem. Other candidates are from KHNAM Christable Wanniang and UDP Kior Sing Hinge.
At Jirang constituency, INC candidate Victor Ranee is in a very close contest with HSPDP candidate Nosi Lyngdoh. Ranee has patronage of sitting MLA L. Mylliemngap and former MLA J D Rymbai is also campaigning for the INC candidate as an act of repaying his old time debt.
Rebel Youth Congress leader Albertus Lapang contesting as independent candidate and KHNAM candidate K Thongni and UDP candidate Balawan Syiemiong are in the fray.
Political observers view that according to the present trends, the UDP will clinch two seats namely Nongpoh and Umsning while Congress will win in Jirang and Mawhati and Umroi seat would go to M D Syiem, an independent candidate.

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