Kohima: The Naga Peoples' Front (NPF) swept back to power in Nagaland today for the third consecutive time with an absolute majority. The Congress has got a drubbing, winning just 8 seats in the 60-member Assembly.
The state party won 38 seats, 12 more than the 26 it had won last time. The Congress could manage to win only eight seats compared with the 18 it won last time. NPF allies Janata Dal (U) and the Bharatiya Janata Party won a seat each. The Nationalist Congress Party contested in 15 constituencies but won in only four seats, while the Rashtriya Janata Dal failed to open its account. Independents have won 8 seats.
Elections were held in 59 of the total 60 seats. Election to the Teunsang Sadar constituency was countermanded following the death of Congress candidate P Chuba Chang a day before the February 23 polls.
NPF heavyweights who were re-elected today include Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio, who won his Northern Angami seat by a convincing 12,671 margin of votes for the sixth consecutive time, defeating his Congress rival Kevise Sogotsu.
Former Nagaland Home Minister and NPF candidate Imkong L Impchen, who resigned following his arrest for allegedly carrying over Rs. one crore in cash, arms and ammunition besides liquor in his vehicle ahead of the Assembly polls, defeated independent candidate T Chalukumba Ao by 5,735 votes. The Congress candidate for the Moatemjen seat forfeited his deposit after winning just 98 votes.