Candidates woo voters in weekly markets

Congress and UDP candidates Vincent Pala and Paul Lyngdoh interact with villagers at Smit, outskirts of Shillong, on Saturday during their campaigns. (UB)

SHILLONG: Several weekly markets were turned into electoral battle fields on Saturday in a last ditch effort to woo voters in the run up to the Lok Sabha polls scheduled for April 9.

The contesting candidates for Shillong Lok Sabha seat held meetings at several market places on Saturday, just two days before the campaign to end.

The same venue was used by many candidates one after another with the same crowd listening to different candidates.

At Smit, in the outskirts of Shillong, Congress candidate Vincent Pala tried to convince the villagers that Foreign Direct Investment would be helpful for the farmers and people in rural areas and not for businessmen.

He had to clarify this as the Congress is targeted by the opponents including BJP for bringing in FDI.

On the other hand, UDP candidate Paul Lyngdoh targeted the Congress for its disunity which, according to him, exposed the party in poor light.

After the campaigns in Smit, both the candidates were seen meeting the villagers together.

Paul also took part in another meeting on the same day at Mairang where people gathered in large numbers due to the market day.

Several campaigners of the political parties including HSPDP leader Ardent Basaiawmoit, John Kharshiing and Cabinet Minister Prestone Tynsong of the Congress spoke on the qualities of their respective candidates and urged the people to vote for their candidates. The same crowd heard varied speeches of several political parties including Aam Aadmi Party.

Addressing the meeting at Mairang, Independent candidate supported by KHNAM and HSPDP Rev. PBM Basaiawmoit expressed his commitment to work for the poor and the needy.