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Ex-IPS officer who guarded Indira Gandhi set to be CM

He, however, holds the dubious distinction of being disqualified twice — both as an MP and MLA – under the anti-defection law. GUWAHATI:  Lalduhoma is the man of the moment.

The Mizos attributed the stellar performance of Zoram People’s Movement (ZPM) in the polls to the suave former Indian Police Service officer-turned-politician. Lalduhoma is also a church leader widely known in the state for his oratory skills and clean image. He, however, holds the dubious distinction of being disqualified twice — both as an MP and MLA – under the anti-defection law. Born in 1949, Lalduhoma took the plunge into politics in 1984 when he had joined the Congress after resigning as former PM Indira Gandhi’s security in-charge.

The party had elected him as its state chief and his political goal was to find a solution to the Mizo insurgency. Lalduhoma had successfully contested the 1984 Lok Sabha elections. However, he quit as the Congress state chief the same year and withdrew his membership from the party in 1986 in protest against the delay in the Mizo peace process Subsequently, he was disqualified under the anti-defection law for giving up the membership of the party which he represented. He is the first MP in the country to be disqualified under this law. Following disqualification, he had stated he was proud of that decision taken for the Mizo peace.

After ditching Congress, Lalduhoma had formed the Mizo National Union in 1986, which merged with Mizoram People’s Conference in due course. He had briefly served in Mizo National Front (MNF) and established a breakaway party called Mizo National Front (Nationalist). It was renamed as Zoram Nationalist Party (ZNP) in 1997. He was its founder president. He was first elected to the Assembly in 2003 as a ZNP candidate. Ahead of 2018 polls, ZNP and some smaller regional forces came together to float ZPM. The ZPM candidates contested as independents as the party did not get recognition from the Election Commission by then. Lalduhoma was elected from Aizawl West I and Serchhip seats and represented Serchhip. However, in November 2020 while he was serving as the leader of Opposition, he was disqualified as an MLA under the anti-defection law for “defecting” to ZPM (it got recognition from EC the year before). The disqualification was based on a representation submitted by 12 MLAs from ruling MNF to Speaker Lalrinliana Sailo. They argued that Lalduhoma breached the anti-defection law by serving as a leader of ZPM considering that he was elected as an independent. (THE NEW INDIAN EXPRESS)