Nagaland got its first-ever woman MLA today, after 60 years since it attained statehood. Hekani Jakhalu, from BJP's ally NDPP, has won from Dimapur-III seat. The 48-year-old lawyer-activist was among four women of the total 183 candidates who contested the Nagaland assembly elections. Ms Jakhalu defeated Lok Janshakti Party's Azheto Zhimomi.
Another woman candidate Salhoutuonuo Kruse, also from the NDPP, is leading in Western Angami seat.
The ruling NDPP-BJP alliance is set to retain power in Nagaland, where counting is underway, as it won three seats and is leading in more than 35 seats.
The Nationalist Democratic Progressive Party, led by Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio, has been in an alliance with the BJP since the last elections in 2018. The alliance had won 30 seats in the previous elections while NPF won 26.
The BJP on Thursday praised Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led government's agenda of peace and development in the northeast as the party led in a majority of seats in Tripura while its alliance government appeared set to retain power in Nagaland.
Union Minister Kiren Rijiju said people in the region have seen for the first time how closely and sincerely the Centre has worked to bring peace and development to the region, be it big projects like building highways or providing them with basic amenities like drinking water, free ration and electricity.