New Delhi: The stage is set for tomorrow’s crucial Assembly elections in the two north-eastern states of Meghalaya and Nagaland.
Polling will be held between 7 am and 4 pm, except in some polling stations of the interior districts of Nagaland, where the process is scheduled to conclude at 3 pm.
The two states have a 60-member House each, but voting will be held for 59 constituencies in both.
In Meghalaya, the election has been countermanded in Williamnagar in the wake of the killing of NCP candidate Jonathone N Sangma in an IED blast in East Garo Hills district on February 18.
In Nagaland, NDPP chief Neiphiu Rio has been declared elected unopposed from the Northern Angami-II constituency.
The results of the polls in the two states, along with that of Tripura, will be declared on March 3.
A high-decibel campaign for the polls in the two states came to an end last evening. Buoyed by the formation of governments in Assam, Manipur and Arunachal Pradesh, the BJP is making a determined bid to expand its footprint in the north-east.
For the Congress, the poll outcome in Meghalaya is particularly significant as it has been ruling the state for the last 10 years. But this time, the BJP is leaving no stone unturned to throw the Congress out of power and add Meghalaya into its kitty. Political observers are keenly watching the BJP’s push in the north-east, a Congress stronghold, where the saffron party has traditionally been a marginal player.