SHILLONG, Dec 17: The unceremonious exit of the KHNAM, albeit in a phased manner, from the Congress-led Khasi Hills United Democratic Alliance (KHUDA) in the KHADC will have no implications on State politics. In spite of the anger displayed by the three KHNAM elected members against the treatment meted out to them by the Congress, Meghalya Minister of District Council Affairs, Prestone Tynsong told The Sentinel today, “Politics at the district council level has nothing to do with State-level politics”. Virtually ruling out the notion that this was another step to dump the KHNAM leader, Paul Lyngdoh from the Cabinet, Tynsong said, “Lyngdoh may be a member of the KHNAM and an elected MLA, but he is not a member of district council nor is he part of the coterie that has gone against the guidelines of the ruling coalition in the council”.
Tynsong’s statement assumed significance in view of the consistent pressure mounted by seven Congress MLAs on the State party leadership to remove Paul Lyngdoh from the Cabinet. Meghalya Pradesh Congress Committee (MPCC) president, Friday Lyngdoh and senior Congress legislator H.D.R Lyngdoh are the frontline Congress leaders who led the signature campaign for the removal of KHNAM leader from the Cabinet.
Even as the KHNAM is assured of the berth in the Congress-led Meghalya United Alliance (MUA) in the State, the three elected members in the district council rued that the Congress had roped in the party only for the number games. “Now they have the numbers and they bulldozed everything that is against their way”, stated KHNAM member, Latiplang Kharkongor. It is noteworthy that the Congress, after roping in the KHNAM as an alliance partner effected a defection of UDP and independent members. The Congress and the defected members number 18 in the 30-member House of the KHADC, thus reducing the combined strength in the Opposition to 10.
Interestingly, while the UDP, KHNAM and HSPDP are part of the ruling coalition in the Congress-led alliance in the State, they are part of the Opposition in the KHADC. On the other hand, known Congress-basher in State politics, that is the NCP, is part of the Congress-led executive committee in the KHADC. THE SENTINEL