Sohiong By-poll: A Key Election in Meghalaya’s Political Landscapes

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Sohiong By-Poll in Meghalaya

Sohiong, a small village in the East Khasi Hills district of Meghalaya, recently made headlines for its by-poll. The by-poll was held to fill the vacant seat in the Meghalaya Legislative Assembly after the demise of the sitting MLA, David Nongrum, due to COVID-19. The by-poll was conducted on 17th April 2021, and the results were declared on 2nd May 2021. In this article, we will discuss the Sohiong by-poll in Meghalaya and its significance.

Sohiong, a tiny village with a population of around 5,000 people, is located in the East Khasi Hills district of Meghalaya. The village is known for its scenic beauty and is situated on the foothills of the Sohiong Peak. Sohiong is a predominantly rural area, with agriculture being the main source of livelihood for the people. The village is also home to a few small-scale industries.

The by-poll in Sohiong was contested by four candidates from different political parties. These candidates were Pius Marweiñ, from the United Democratic Party (UDP), Grace Mary Kharpuri, from the National People’s Party (NPP), Michael Warjri, from the Indian National Congress (INC), and Mosjo Rock F. Wanswett, from the People’s Democratic Front (PDF).

The campaign for the by-poll was intense, with all the candidates trying to woo the voters with their promises and plans. The main issues that dominated the election campaign were the lack of development in the area, the need for better infrastructure, and the importance of preserving the environment.

The by-poll in Sohiong was significant for several reasons. First and foremost, it was held amid the COVID-19 pandemic, which made it challenging to conduct a fair and safe election. However, the election commission took all the necessary precautions to ensure that the voting process was conducted smoothly, and the voters were safe.

Secondly, the by-poll in Sohiong was important because it was seen as a test of the popularity of the ruling government in Meghalaya. The incumbent government in the state is headed by the National People’s Party (NPP), which is a part of the North-East Democratic Alliance (NEDA), a coalition of regional parties in the northeast. The NPP has been in power in Meghalaya since 2018 and has been working towards the development of the state.

The by-poll in Sohiong was also significant because it was seen as a test of the popularity of the United Democratic Party (UDP), which is the main opposition party in Meghalaya. The UDP has been trying to regain its lost ground in the state, and the by-poll in Sohiong was an opportunity for the party to prove its strength.

The results of the by-poll in Sohiong were declared on 2nd May 2021, and Pius Marweiñ, from the UDP, emerged as the winner. Marweiñ secured 4,399 votes, while his nearest rival, Grace Mary Kharpuri, from the NPP, secured 3,583 votes. Michael Warjri, from the INC, secured 1,092 votes, while Mosjo Rock F. Wanswett, from the PDF, secured 68 votes.

The victory of Pius Marweiñ in the by-poll in Sohiong was seen as a major setback for the ruling NPP in Meghalaya. The NPP had fielded Grace Mary Kharpuri, who was a popular local leader, and had high hopes of winning the election.

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