BJP, KHNAM not daunted by by-poll disaster

SHILLONG: The by-election to the seven vacant seats of the KHADC and the JHADC proved to be a disaster for the BJP and the Khun Hynniewtrep National Awakening Movement (KHNAM) as both parties failed to win even a single seat.
In Nongkrem constituency, BJP’s Mamiry Nongklaw got only 200 votes whereas KHNAM’s Edarstar Lyngdoh Nongbri secured only 455 votes.
In Laban-Mawprem, KHNAM’s Bankhraw Sing Kharbuli got 578 votes whereas BJP’s Hubert Marbaniang managed only 223 votes.
In Nongspung-Sohiong constituency, the vote count was even less for BJP candidate Kyntiewborlang Syiemlieh at 190.
However, the saffron party recorded a decent vote count in Mairang Nongkhlaw with its candidate, Councellor Singh Wahlang, securing 6,601 votes and managing a third position.
In Pariong-Mawthadraishan, Thandarsingh Warjri of BJP got 617 votes whereas KHNAM’s Pyndapborlang Lyngdoh Marshilong got 121 votes.
Similarly, in Rambrai-Jynrgam, BJP’s Denestar Pariong got 522 votes.
In War East, the lone JHADC constituency, BJP candidate Smen Kyndait could secure only 65 votes.
Speaking to The Shillong Times on the party’s poor show, BJP National Council member Edmund Sangma said there was nothing wrong with the party and it has accepted the mandate of the people.
“As a trial of strength, we participated in the by-election and the results indicate that we need to work harder for the 2018 Assembly elections,” he said.
He also said the party would have to sit and make the assessment of the results of the by-elections.
On the other hand, KHNAM working president Edelbert Nongrum said the party has tried its best to highlight its strong principle and its stand despite the time constraint.
“We dared to contest the election in this short time. Though we have not succeeded today but one day we will succeed,” he said.
He further said winning election is not the aim of KHNAM but its first and foremost priority was to highlight its mission not just as a political party but as a political movement.
HSPDP president Ardent Basaiawmoit, on the other hand, said he respects the mandate of the people after the party won two seats – Nongspung-Sohiong and Pariong-Mawthadraishan. When contacted, he said, “We will look into the assurances made by winning candidate H.S Shylla over MUDA encroachment and other issues that he had discussed (before the polls).”
However, Basaiawmoit said he is glad that the people have stood by the party in Nongspung-Sohiong and Pariong-Mawthadraishan. “Introspection is needed on the part of the party as to where we have failed,” he added.
Meanwhile, the United Democratic Party (UDP) which had expected at least three seats in the KHADC by-polls is still happy with its two-seat victory.
“It is okay for us though we had expected a bit more in elections after the party functionaries at all the levels worked so hard,” UDP general secretary Jemino Mawthoh said.
Pointing out the party’s “Good Feel Factor”, Mawthoh said there is acceptability among people and it is just a matter of time when the acceptability will materialise into votes in the 2018 Assembly elections.
He said nothing went wrong with the party but “introspection is required” to find out why the party did not fare well in other constituencies.
“The overall good thing about us is the fact that the spirit of being together is there,” he said and added that the United Democratic Party is also the United Discipline Party.
He said the party would go forward with the principles of the party.
It may be mentioned that the party could win in Nongkrem and Mairang-Nongkhlaw out of the seven seats which it contested in KHADC and JHADC by-polls.
New Faces
The KHADC has opened its doorway to new faces after the people’s verdict was out for the election to the by-poll on Friday.
NCP’s Ricky Shullai was poised to win with the backing of his uncle Sanbor Shullai who ensured his nephew’s win while HSPDP’s Samlin Malniang entered the den of Home Minister HDR Lyngdoh by defeating his son Nathaniel Osbert Rymmai from the Congress.
2 former CEMs return
Another interesting note is the comeback of two former CEMs, UDP’s H.S Shylla (KHADC) and Congress leader Lamdibok Sumer (JHADC).

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