Polling for the 25- member Lai Autonomous District Council (LADC) in Lawngtlai district in Mizoram has ended peacefully.

The total voters’ turnout was 85 per cent in the polls that took place on Friday.

The LACD has a total of  51,456 voters, including 26,104 females.

According to Mizoram State Election Commission secretary Teresy Vanlalhruaii, polling in all the 111 polling stations went peacefully and no untoward incident was reported during the 10 hour- long polling.

Polling began at 7 am and ended at 4 pm, she said.

She said that social distancing and other Covid-19 protocols were strictly maintained during polling.

Also read: Mizoram: Efforts to be made for direct funding to Autonomous District Councils, says Kiren Rijiju 

Altogether, 72 candidates were in the fray for 25 seats in the LACD.

The polls are believed to be a straight fight between the ruling Mizo National Front (MNF), which contested in all the seats, and the BJP, which fielded candidates in 17 seats.

While the Congress fielded its candidates in 14 seats, there were 16 independent candidates.

Although MNF is part of the BJP led NDA government in the centre, it does not work with the BJP in Mizoram.

Counting of votes will be held on December 8.

In the present council, MNF has the highest number of members at 11, followed by BJP with 9 and Congress with 5.

Both the MNF and BJP are confident of winning the polls.

State BJP president Vanlalhmuaka said that the party is preparing to set up a government in the LACD after the polls.

Though the saffron party has fielded only 17 seats, eight short of the total seats, it has the support of seven independent candidates, he said.

During an election campaign, senior BJP leader and Union sports minister Kiren Rijiju had said that the centre would make efforts to give more powers to the three autonomous district councils (ADCs) by amending the Sixth Schedule of the Constitution, if the BJP is voted to power.

The Union government would also ensure the autonomous councils receive direct funding from the centre.

The LADC, Mara Autonomous District Council and Chakma Autonomous District Council were established in 1972.

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