Thursday, April 30, 2009

Sikkim’s unique electoral college

From chennaivision

Sikkim has a unique electoral college for Sangha (monasteries) seat whereby only Buddihst Lamas and Nuns have the right to elect one representative in the 32-member Assembly.

The Lamas and Nuns can cast ballot from their respective Assembly segments in general booth but have a separate ballot box for Sangha seat.

-X- Women take pride in Sikkim’s elections in electing the 8th Assembly as some 1,43,154 electors of the total 3,00,584 are females.

Of them a record 56 are nuns, which showed women are not far from taking lead role in propagating Buddhism in this erstwhile Chogyal kingdom.

-X- Chujachen constituency in east Sikkim has the highest number of voters in a constituency at 12,902. The lowest is at Lachen-Mangan, a tribal Bhutia seat north Sikkim with 5699 voters.

-X- The polling station with the largest number of voters is Arithang-Old Secretariat room No 1 with 1206 voters in east Sikkim.

The lowest number of voters is in 127 polling station at Poklok-Kamrang-Pajer primary school in south Sikkim, a new territory after delimitation of constituencies.

-X- Altogether 741 voters will cast their ballot at 12000-ft high at Gnathang in east Sikkim, the highest polling station under Gnathang-Machong(Bhutia-Lepcha) constituency.

-X- People in large numbers left from Sikkim’s capital Gangtok on the eve of polling for their villages to cast ballot. ”I have to walk some ten kilometers from the road to reach my village and I will leave a day in advance,” Vishal Raj Gurung, a government employee said.

-X- Chujachen in east Sikkim and Melli in the south have the highest number of eight candidates in the fray. Kabi Tingda in north has only two candidates in the fray which a direct fight between the SDF and the Congress.

-X- Youngest male candidate in the fray is 26-year-old Baghirath Bhandari, fielded by the CPI(M) from Melli constituency in south Sikkim. Oldest male candidate is former chief minister Nar Bahadur Bhandari(68), the Congress president contesting from Soreng-Chakung (West), Khamdong Singtam (east).

Youngest female candidate is Sanjukta Rai(26) of Sikkim Jan Ekta Party from Namthang-Rateypani in south Sikkim while the oldest woman candidate is Purna Kumari Rai(50) of Congress from Poklok-Kamrang contesting against Chief Minister Pawan Chamling.

-X- Three poll veterans, who fought for Sikkim’s merger with India in 1973 are among seven candidates fighting for the only Lok Sabha seat in Sikkim. They are former ministers Ram Chandra Poudyal as Independent, Khara Nanda Uprety as Congress nominee and Nar Bahadur Khathiwada from Sikkim Gorkha Prajatantrik Party.

-X- Sikkim is the only state in India, which has the lone Lok Sabha member representing about 5.5 lakh people of the state in the 543-member Lower House of Parliament.