Other contestants congratulate the thrompon-elect

Rajesh Rai | Phuentsholing

Racing ahead with just one vote advantage from the dhamngoi zomdu, former thrompon Uttar Kumar Rai, 39, of Neydrag demkhong managed to win and get elected as the Phuentsholing thrompon for the second term yesterday.

He garnered 336 votes out of 782 total votes.

Former Phuentsholing Thromde engineer, Devi Charan Dhimal,  secured 220 votes, followed by Karma Gelay’s 154. The lone woman candidate, Chhungku Dawa, secured 72 votes.

Thanking people for the support, Uttar Kumar Rai said the victory was not his alone.

“It is people’s victory. It is a collective victory,” he said, adding that the victory is for the town’s benefit.

“I would also like to thank all other thrompon and tshogpa candidates for their participation.”

While there is so much to do to develop Phuentsholing into a desired city, his winning will give the impetus for continuity and the ongoing development works will get the required boost, he added.

“We will work tirelessly in collaboration with the new tshogpas, thromde heads and the people. It is time to collectively shape and build Phuentsholing to the town we best desire and dream for. We will use our experience.”

Due to the ongoing lockdown in Phuentsholing, people had cast their votes on ballots on April 24 and April 25. It is the country’s first ever thromde election in which voters had cast their votes before the polling day, which was yesterday. Only vote counting was held yesterday.

Meanwhile, for the tshogpa positions, three demkhongs have gone for the new candidates this time.

Two women had contested from Pekarzhing demkhong. The 28-year-old Pompha Devi Ghalley won by securing 90 votes against the former tshogpa Tirtha Maya Mongar’s 72 votes. Tirtha Maya had served as tshogpa for two previous terms.

In Rinchending, new candidate Santa Man Ghallay secured 57 votes to win. Former tshogpa Passang Norbu Tamang got 35 votes.

The lone tshogpa candidate from Phuentsholing Maed (core town), Karma Chen, received 119 “yes” votes and 36 “no” votes and became the new tshogpa. He also had served as the tshogpa during the first thromde term.

Other three demkhongs of Phuentsholing Toed, Neydrag and Pasakha also had just a candidate each, who are all former tshogpas. They also won in “yes” and “no” votes.

Sharmila Limbu of Phuentsholing Toed got 156 “yes” votes and 14 “no” votes. Nar Bahadur Rai of Neydrag received 74 “yes” against seven “no” votes.

Pravath Rai of Pasakha demkhong won with 114 “yes” against nine “no” votes.