Rishang Keishing likely to be re-elected as MP

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Imphal, Mar 14 (UNI) Rajya Sabha member and former chief minister Rishang Keishing is likely to be re-elected to the lone Rajya Sabha seat in Manipur as Congress commands 31 seats in the 60-member House.

Congress President Sonia Gandhi yesterday approved the names of candidates for the biennial elections to the Rajya Sabha and Legislative Council, including the name of Rishang Keishing. In the 60-member house, the CPI has four members and the RJD, three.

Rajya Sabha election is scheduled to be held on March 26 and Mr Rishang has not yet applied for a ticket.

Mr Rishang had been elected as Rajya Sabha member in 2002 and his term expires on April 8.

Meanwhile, the Manipur People's Party (MPP) had announced that it would not project any candidate. So far, no other political party has declared the names of their candidates.

The Rajya Sabha elections had seen some interesting developments during the last few days. The Muslims are demanding the nomination of a Congress candidate, while the Scheduled Caste communities had also demanded nomination of a SC candidate. Various women organisations had also been demanding nomination of a woman.

In 1972, he was elected as a member of the Manipur State Legislative Assembly from Phungyar AC, Ukhrul. He was re-elected in 1974.

He has, so far, held the portfolios of the Finance Ministry, Education Ministry, Tribal Welfares Ministry and Transport and Forest Ministry between 1974 and 1977.

Mr Rishang (88) has the unique distinction of being the longest serving Chief Minister of the state from November 27, 1980 to January 4, 1985. He was also elected to the Lok Sabha in the 1952 general elections from outer Manipur Lok Sabha Constituency and he was re-elected to the Lower House again in 1962.

He won in 1980 again and was raised to the post of Deputy Chief Minister and later served as chief minister.

He served as chief minister for the second time from February 1985 to 1988 and again from March 1994 to 1995 and from December 1995 to 1998.

He attained another unique position when he was the only Opposition member in the Assembly, when Radhabinod Koijam became Chief Minister in 2001.

UNI NS LL AB BDP KN1411

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