April 25, 2018

Congress outsmarted in Meghalaya

07 March 2018, 07:33 | Lionel James

Chief Minister Mukul Sangma after casting his vote on February 27. | IANS

Preview Congress may lose Meghalaya not to the BJP but to an underdog

A day after the results of Meghalaya Assembly Election were announced, NPP president Conrad Sangma met Meghalaya Governor Ganga Prasad on Sunday evening and staked claim to form the government in the state with the support of 34 MLAs in the 60-member Assembly.

Congress leader Dr Mukul Sangma has tendered his resignation as the chief minister of the state on Sunday.

National People's Party (NPP) Supremo and Lok Sabha memberConrad K Sangma is all set to be sworn in as next Chief Minister of Meghalaya to unseat the Congress out of power in Meghalaya.

The ruling Congress, which emerged as the single largest party winning 21 seats in the Assembly elections, could not stitch a post-poll alliance with the regional parties to retain power in Meghalaya. NPP leader Conrad Sangma, who is now a Lok Sabha MP from Tura, will be sworn in as the chief minister in Shillong on Tuesday. Conrad Sangma is now a Lok Sabha member from Tura seat in Meghalaya.

Mr Sarma, who was camping in Shillong since Saturday and was instrumental in foiling the Congress' bid to woo the regional parties, including the Peoples' Democratic Front (PDF), said that the BJP would also be a part of the government. The role of the BJP is just a facilitator. Even in Tripura, where the Congress got 45 per cent of the vote share in the 48 seats it contested in 2013, the party drew a blank this time on account of the apathy of the central leadership thereby ceding its space in entirety to the BJP.

The Congress is 10 seats short of the halfway mark at 31. BJP had won only two seats.

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Northeast Democratic Alliance (NEDA) convenor Himanta Biswa Sarma said that the BJP's expansion in the region is now complete. The United Democratic Party (UDP) won six seats while its alliance partner the HSPDP won two seats.

"Whoever takes the charge as the political chief executive of the state, the responsibility that will be vested upon him is tremendous and will require lots of support from everyone", he told reporters.

She, however, kept mum when asked whether she would be the home minister in the new cabinet and said it was up to the leaders to decide who would get to be inducted and in what capacity.

Victory celebrations erupted in BJP state office in Agartala as the news of BJP emerging victorious in Tripura polls poured in.

"Since the whole election process is over, the chief minister has to submit his resignation, so I did".

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