By-election to the North Angami-I assembly constituency in Nagaland passed off peacefully on Saturday, with state chief election officer Abhijit Sinha putting the voter turn-out at 78.55 per cent. Former Chief Minister Shurhozelie Liezietsu is locked in a straight contest with Kekhrie Yhome, an independent candidate reportedly backed by the TR Zeliang faction of the Naga People’s Front (NPF).
The seat had fallen vacant after Khriehu Liezietsu had resigned to facilitate his father Shurhozelie’s entry to the state assembly after the latter was appointed chief minister in February this year.
But the political scenario in Nagaland changed so quickly earlier this month that by the time Shurhozelie Liezietsu had filed his nomination papers for the by-election, he was already ousted from the chief minister’s office by TR Zeliang and his followers, all from the same political party, the NPF.
With Liezietsu and Zeliang parting ways, the latter was installed chief minister on July 19 after his predecessor failed to turn up for a floor test earlier on that day as majority of the NPF legislators and all the BJP and Independent MLAs sided with Zeliang.