New Delhi, Mar 10 : The Election Commission on Sunday announced simultaneous polls to the 32-member State Assembly and the lone Lok Sabha seat in Sikkim to be held on April 11.
There are 32 members in a legislative assembly, including two seats reserved for Scheduled Castes (SC) and 12 for Scheduled Tribes (ST).
In 2014, the ruling SDF had won 22 seats while Opposition Sikkim Krantikari Morcha (SKM) got 10 seats and both the national parties BJP and Congress do not have much electoral presence in the state.
Chief Minister Pawan Kumar Chamling from SDF became Chief Minister December 12, 1994 and
since then has not looked behind.
He is also known for running the state of affairs of Sikkim as his fiefdom. SDF has in the past done business with the Congress led UPA and is now a constituent of NDA.
His detractors say Chamling does not want any other power centre to build up and hence even though his party SDF was part of UPA, now is a constituent of NDA, he does not allow any of his MPs (either Lok Sabha or Rajya Sabha) to join the union ministry.
On April 29, 2018, he surpassed the record of Marxist veteran Jyoti Basu, who ruled West Bengal for 23 years continuously from June 21, 1977 till November 6, 2000, before he gave up the post to his handpicked Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee.
Credited for giving development, necessary infrastructure development and particularly steering the state into making it the country's first organic state, the political observers know Mr Chamling as a astute politician who could use his machinations with the power centres in Delhi also to counter any effective competitor.