The Lok Sabha Elections have kept everybody on edge because of how things are changing every moment. A lot of uproar is happening around representation of women candidates in different parties and different states. One part of the country that fails to put the political spotlight on women is North East. The cluster of states may be extremely women-friendly and progressive in mind-set but when it comes to women in parliament from North Eastern states, it lags far behind than most of the other parts of the country. In this Lok Sabha elections, some parties have fielded women candidates in different states belonging to the North East region while we also we see a few women contesting independently for the first time.
Here’s a list of six women candidates contesting to win parliamentary seats:
- Jarjum Ete from Arunachal Pradesh West
The chairperson of the Arunachal Pradesh State Commission on Women, Jarjum Ete belongs to the Galo Tribe and she is contesting from Arunachal Pradesh West constituency on the ticket of Janta Dal (Secular). While Ete was a part of Congress for several years, she quit the party recently and joined JD (S) to contest in the election. With this she becomes the first woman ever to contest a Lok Sabha elections from Arunachal Pradesh.
- Lalthlamuani from Mizoram
Mizoram’s first woman candidate Lalthlamuani is contesting as an independent candidate from the single constituency state. She is a tribal Jewish woman who believes that times have changed and a lot of educated women capable of running the nation are in abundance. “Women should enter politics as they would be better politicians because women are born with the skills and dedication to become a mother. A mother takes care of the husband and nurtures the children so in the same manner a woman politician would be able to take care of the state while nurturing the people of the state,” she said in a conversation with SheThePeople.TV.
- Dipti Halam from Tripura East
Tripura has more than one woman candidate in the fray this time in the Lok Sabha election—a total of two. One of them is contesting on the ticket of a regional party, All India People Congress who named a tribal woman, Dipti Halam as their candidate from Tripura East. Halam is a first time candidate who wants to solve the issue of unemployment in her state. She feels that the tribal cluster in the state has so much potential with a fair percentage of youth and so she wants to appeal to bigger corporates to come to the state to create more jobs for the young people.
She told us, “If I become an MP, which I have a feeling that I will win the election, I can do so much more for the youth by opening the job market for them here in Tripura. I would like to bring bigger corporates to Tripura so both men and women can find work.”
- Pratima Bhowmik from Tripura West
The constituency that went to poll on April 11 saw only one woman candidate contesting from Tripura West. Pratima Bhowmik is a candidate from BJP and she is probably the only woman candidate who has been given a ticket from a national party. Tripura West had a total of total of 13,47,381 electorate, including 6,65,322 women, who are eligible to exercise their franchise to decide the electoral fate of 13 candidates. The 50-year-old Bhowmik was up against Communist Party of India (Marxist)-led Left Front candidate Sankar Prasad Datta, 61, and Subal Bhowmik, 58, who quit the BJP’s Vice-President’s post and became the Congress aspirant last month.
“If I become an MP, which I have a feeling that I will win the election, I can do so much more for the youth by opening the job market for them here in Tripura. I would like to bring bigger corporates to Tripura so both men and women can find work.”
- Agatha Sangma from Tura
Former Member of Parliament, Agatha Kongkal Sangma is contesting again from Tura constituency of Meghalaya on the ticket of National People’s Party. She was part of the 15th Lok Sabha and she represented Tura following the 2009 parliamentary election as a candidate of the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP). At 29, she was the youngest Minister of State in the UPA II Cabinet. Sangma was first elected to the 14th Lok Sabha in a by-election in May 2008, after her father P.A. Sangma resigned from the seat to join state politics. Later she was re-elected to the 15th Lok Sabha.
- Sunmaya Gurung from Sikkim
Sunmaya Gurung is the lone woman candidate from Sikkim constituency who is contesting on the ticket of a regional party by the name of Jai Maha Barath Party. A resident of East Gangtok, Gurung declared in her nomination papers that she is a social worker. Her husband is a government employee and the 51-year-old has studied till eighth grade.
Picture credit: STP