Lalbuanga Sailo (left) and Lalnghinglova Hmar (right) during candidate declaration Credit: EastMojo image

Aizawl: The Zoram People’s Movement (ZPM)-Congress combine on Thursday released its list of candidates for the Lok Sabha polls and assembly by-election.

ZPM secretary general K Sapdanga declared Lalnghinglova Hmar aka Tetea Hmar, joint editor of local daily “Vanglaini” and honorary secretary of Mizoram Football Association (MFA) as people candidate for the lone Lok Sabha seat in a function held at Aijal club here.

Former bureaucrat Lalbuanga Sailo has also been named ZPM-Congress common candidate for by-election to Aizawl West-I seat. Both the Lok Sabha and assembly by-elections will be held simultaneously on April 11.

Speaking on the occasion, Sapdanga said the desire to sustain secularism and protect Christianity have brought both ZPM and Congress together. He alleged that the BJP has a hidden agenda of making India into a Hindu kingdom by suppressing all other religious minorities.

ZPM-Congress MP nominee Lalnghinglova Hmar said he will try his best to uplift the state in different fields if he is elected to Lok Sabha. He expressed hope that he will win the Lok Sabha polls as he is a people candidate representing the entire Mizoram population and also received the support of two major political parties.

The 42-year-old new entrant said he will give priority to the defeat of the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, protection of Christian religion and all-round development of the state if he becomes an MP.

Hmar also slammed Mizo National Front (MNF) headed by chief minister Zoramthanga for being a part of NEDA despite claiming that it opposed citizenship bill.

Born in 1977, Hmar completed his master degree in History from North Eastern Hills University (NEHU), Shillong and joined Vanglaini, the largest circulated vernacular paper in the state as joint editor in 2001. He has received numerous awards in the field of print media.

Apart from being honorary secretary of MFA, Hmar is presently an executive member or All India Football Federation and members of Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) National Committee on sports.

He is known to be the man behind revolution of football in Mizoram.

Hmar will be up against rival MNF nominee C Lalrosanga and independent candidate Lalhriatrenga Chhangte. BJP is yet to announce its candidate.

Lalbuanga Sailo said that the desire to serve Mizoram and the Mizo people motivated him to join politics. He is confident of winning the polls as people candidate.

Sailo (62) had joined government service after his graduation in 1983. He retired as assistant director of census in 2017 after serving in different departments.

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