Iboyaima Laithangbam

IMPHAL: In the just concluded Manipur Assembly elections, not a single woman candidate has been elected, though nine were in the fray.

The lone woman representative in the last Assembly, Cooperation Minister Wahengbam Leima tasted defeat.

In the electoral history of Manipur, only three women had been elected so far.The first was Hungmila Shaiza, wife of the the former Chief Minister, Yangmasho Shaiza, who was gunned down by tribal extremists. The second was Keisham Apabi, wife of K. Bira, an MLA, who was killed in an air crash near here. Apparently, the sympathy factor worked for the two. Both were not elected for the second time.

However, Ms. Leima won in a straight fight in the last polls. She was elected three times.

Manipur People's Party candidate for the Andro constituency, Thounaojam Shyamkumar, emerged victorious. He is the third person to be elected, despite being lodged in jail. He secured the highest number of votes 18,388, defeating his nearest rival Syed Ahmed (NCP) by a margin of 13,231 votes.