DIMAPUR: The JD-U has announced the candidature of its first candidate Kitoho S Rotokha to contest the February 27 Nagaland assembly elections from Ghaspani II constituency here on Sunday evening.

Rotokha is also the first officially declared candidate among all the political parties contesting the Nagaland polls.

Rotokha’s candidature was announced by Nagaland JD-U president NSN Lotha in the presence of JDU national president Rajiv Ranjan Lalan Singh, general secretary and in charge of north east Afaque Ahmed Khan, Rajya Sabha MP Aneel Hegde and Bihar minister Sanjay Kumar Jha at a party’s candidature declaration programme, attended by hundreds of his supporters, at Dimapur town hall in Nagaland.

The Ghaspani II constituency in Nagaland, which has little over 29,000 votes, is likely to witness a three-cornered contest between the JD-U, the NDPP and Republican Party of India (Athawale).

In his speech, Rotokha promised mainly to focus on empowerment of youth and women, good governance by bringing in development in all sectors, finding gainful employment for the unemployed and reviving traditional industries such as piggery, poultry among others if he emerges winner.

He said he is already on the job and has been meeting with the villagers of the constituency for the last eight months to accomplish his mission.

Asserting that the victory will be “ours”, Rotokha, who is associated with many social organisations, assured the people of the constituency that his commitments will not go in vain.

In his address, JDU national president Singh said the people of Nagaland felt betrayed by the BJP government as the party promised “election for solution” before the 2018 assembly elections in Nagaland.

Saying that the people of Nagaland are again facing another election after five years, he asked where is the solution to the Naga issue.

He accused the central government of sitting over the Framework Agreement signed with the NSCN (IM) on August 3, 2015. He claimed that the next government in Nagaland cannot be formed without the JDU that will ensure implementation of Naga solution.

JDU general secretary Khan, MP Hegde, Bihar minister Jha, Nagaland JDU chief Lotha, besides village elders and youth leaders of the constituency, also spoke on the occasion.

Later at a media briefing, Singh said the party has not yet decided how many candidates it will field for the coming elections. He, however, said state JDU president Lotha will contest from Tyui seat, currently represented by deputy chief minister and senior BJP leader Y Patton.

Lotha said the party will put up only winnable candidates.

Bhadra Gogoi

Bhadra Gogoi is Northeast Now Correspondent in Nagaland. He can be reached at: bhadragogoi@yahoo.com