Shillong, Sep 24 (UNI) A pall of gloom descended on Shillong after the local sensational singer Amit Paul was edged out by Prashant Tamang from nearby Darjeeling in ''Indian Idol 3''.
Prashant, a constable with the West Bengal Police, outshone the Shillong-born singer by a margin of four lakh votes in the grand finale of the popular reality show on Sony Entertainment TV.
Amit Paul's house on GS road had been reverberating with music and celebrations until last night but was plunged in eerie silence today.
Amit's fans still refused to accept the verdict and vehemently said, ''This cannot be and Amit is a much better singer than Prashant.'' ''Prashant may have defeated our Amit but we are proud of him for making it to the grand finale and proving that North East can produce talented boys and girls,'' Anupam Das, an ardent fan of Amit, said.
Meanwhile, Amit Paul has appealed to the people in Meghalaya to maintain peace and harmony.
''I lost, but I am a winner because I united my people together in harmony. Let us accept the verdict,'' Amit requested to his close friends through the media.
Meghalaya Chief Minister D D Lapang, who conferred on Amit the honorary title of Meghalaya's Brand Ambassador to foster ''peace, communal harmony, and excellence'', appealed to the public to take the defeat of the Shillong lad in a ''sporting spirit''.
''Amit has given his best efforts and is still the pride of Meghalaya even though he was defeated,'' Mr Lapang told UNI last night after Amit's defeat to Prashant in the battle of votes.
The Chief Minister, however, congratulated Prashant Tamang, the winner of the reality show.
''The people of Meghalaya enthusiastically supported their hero and must be magnanimous enough to accept the result,'' he said.
Meanwhile, the district administration has tightened the security in the vulnerable areas of Shillong.
''We have deployed a quick reaction team in those areas where trouble is apprehended,'' East Khasi Hills Superintendent of Police A R Mawthoh said.
Mr Mawthoh assured that the police was well prepared to deal with any law and order situation arising out of the defeat of the Shillong singing sensation Amit Paul.
The Shillong Arts Music Lovers Forum (SAMLF), which spearheaded the campaign for Amit, appealed to the people to maintain peace and harmony in the event of the unexpected defeat of Amit Paul.
''Amit may not have become the Indian Idol, but he is the idol in the hearts of the Meghalayans and the North East,'' SAMLF sources said.