Mizoram Assembly elections 2018: Only 15 women candidates in fray
Only 15 candidates out of the over 200 in fray for the Mizoram Assembly elections are women even as the state has more female voters as compared to male. The BJP, which has never won a seat in the state, has fielded the highest number of six women candidates.
Its state president J V Hluna said Mizo women were not traditionally interested in politics, but now they were participating in social activities and it has submitted a memoranda to all political parties to field women candidates.
The BJP is followed by the Zoram Thar, an Evangelist political party, which has fielded five women aspirants.
While the outgoing government’s minister Vanlalawmpuii Chawngthu is fighting on a Congress ticket, two women are contesting for the Zoram People’s Movement (ZPM). The NCP has given ticket to only one woman.
The powerful Mizo National Front (MNF) has not fielded any woman candidate for the election.
MNF president Zoramthanga told PTI, “We fielded women candidates in 1987 and we had even a woman minister. But later in our women wing, we don’t have suitable candidate.” In all, there are 201 candidates in the state which goes to poll on November 28 to elect members for the 40-member Assembly.
The assistant professor of the Regional Institute of Paramedical and Nursing Sciences (RIPANS) R Lalawmpuii said that women in Mizoram had never thought about the issue seriously as it was their mindset that politics was for men only.
Lalawmpuii, however, said that given a chance she would take part in politics as she felt that young women should join politics.
First time voter and a college student R Lallawmawmi said “While voting, absence of women candidate will not cross my mind.
“In fact, I never thought about it. I’ll not take part in politics as I am not interested,” said the teenager, who is a member of the U-19 state cricket team and a sub-junior state badminton player.
“Every political party has a women’s front, but hardly any woman candidate,” Aizawl District Basketball Association general secretary Emanuel L Ralte said.
According to the final roll published on September 27 this year for the Assembly polls, Mizoram has a total voter of 7,68,181 persons, of which 3,74,496 are males and 3,93,685 females.
Barring Mamit district, the remaining seven districts of Kolasib, Aizawl, Champhai, Serchhip, Lunglei, Lawngtlai and Siaha have higher number of female voters than male electorate.