Aizawl, Dec 11 (IANS) The new Mizo National Front (MNF) government is likely to assume office on Saturday, party president and Chief Minister-designate Zoramthanga said here on Tuesday night.
“I have discussed this evening with Governor Kummanam Rajasekhar about holding the swearing-in ceremony of the new Council of Ministers on December 15. The Governor after talking with all the stakeholders will decide about the time and date of the oath-taking ceremony on Wednesday,” the MNF supremo told the media.
Earlier in the evening, after handing down a crushing defeat to the ruling Congress, MNF head Zoramthanga met the Governor at the Raj Bhavan and staked claim to form the government, after a decade.
A statement of the MNF said that Zoramthanga has been unanimously elected leader of the MNF Legislature Party.
A former Chief Minister, Zoramthanga, 74, was elected for a fifth term from Aizawl East-I seat, defeating Independent candidate K. Sapdanga by a margin of 2,504 votes.
The MNF, which got only five seats in the 2013 Assembly polls, secured 26 seats this time, while the ruling Congress won only five against 34 seats last time.
The MNF, a constituent of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led North East Democratic Alliance (NEDA), governed Mizoram for 10 years — 1998-2003 and 2003-2008.
MNF’s founder and former militant leader Laldenga had headed two brief MNF-led governments in 1986-1987 and 1987-1988 before the President’s rule was imposed in the state on October 8, 1988.
However, both MNF and BJP contested polls separately in Mizoram. The MNF had put up 40 candidates and BJP 39, its highest ever.
The veteran tribal leader, Zoramthanga was earlier the Chief Minister of the Christian-dominated northeastern state for 10 years (1998-2003 and 2003-2008).