As the countdown begins for the November 28 elections for the 40-member state assembly, two organistaions have come out with the list of candidates facing criminal cases.

Chief Minister Lal Thanhawla is among the nine of the total 200 candidates in the fray facing criminal charges, according to two civil society organisations.

Mizo National Front (MNF) president and former chief minister Zoramthanga is another bigwig fighting criminal charges, the report of the Mizoram Election Watch (MEW) and Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) said. It is based on affidavits filed to the Election Commission by the aspirants.

The others facing criminal charges are V Malsawmtluanga (Independent), Vl Zahawma Chawngthu (BJP), Rasik Mohan Chakma (MNF), Lalduhpuii (BJP), James Thanghmingmawia (Congress) and R Lalthangliana (MNF). Out of the nine contestants, only four are facing serious criminal cases, it said.

While the Congress and the MNF are contesting all 40 constituencies this time, the BJP is fighting in 39 seats with an aim to opening its account for the first time in Mizoram. The Congress is also going all out to retain its last bastion in the Northeast.

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