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All the three candidates, one each from the ruling Mizo National Front (MNF), opposition parties Zoram People’s Movement (ZPM) and Congress, have cleared scrutiny for the lone Rajya Sabha seat in Mizoram, an official said on Wednesday.

Assembly commissioner and secretary H Lalrinawma said scrutiny of nomination papers of three candidates – MNF’s K Vanlalvena, ZMP’s B Lalchhanzova and Congress nominee Dr Lallianchhunga was held on Wednesday as per which they were found eligible for the biennial elections.

He said they have informed the Election Commission and state chief electoral officer about the matter and yet to notify their candidatures.

Also read: MNF, Congress, ZPM candidates file nomination for Mizoram RS poll

Lalrinawma, who is also the returning officer for the Rajya Sabha polls, said preparations are gaining momentum for the upcoming biennial election.

“In view of the COVID-19 spread, we have prepared standard operating procedure (SOP) for the elections and have sent the same to the ECI. Polling will be held under strict social distancing norms and thermal scannerwill be used,” he said.

He said that a medical team will be deployed and an isolation room has been set up at the Assembly secretariat in case of members having fever during polling.

He said they have written to the state Director General of Police (DGP) for security deployment during the election process and also asked the election department to arrange ballot box, papers and pigeonhole, among others.

According to the RO, polling for the lone Rajya Sabha seat will be held at the Assembly committee room (main building) on June 19 in which ballot papers will be used.

Counting of votes will be held on the same dayfrom 5 pm at conference hall, assembly annexe building, he said.

The last date for withdrawal of candidature is fixed on June 12.

There are 40 members in the present Mizoram Assembly.

The ruling MNF has 27 members, ZPM-7, Congress- 5 and the BJP has one member.

The ruling MNF nominee K Vanlalvena, who had formerly served as the MNF youth wing president and later as general secretary in the party general headquarters, had unsuccessfully contested the assembly bypolls to Aizawl North-III seat in November, 2005 and lost to Congress candidate Lal Thanzara.

Main opposition ZPM’s candidate B. Lalchhanzova had lost Aizawl East-II seat to MNF nominee Robert Romawia Royte in the last Assembly polls in November, 2018.

The Congress has fielded party spokesperson and media department chairman Dr Lallianchhunga, who is also an association professor at the political science department in Mizoram University (MZU).

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