Former Meghalaya CM to quit Congress party

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Shillong, Jan 2 (UNI) Former Meghalaya Chief Minister and senior Congress leader J D Rymbai today said he would quit the party, even as United Democratic Party(UDP) decided to allot a party ticket.

Mr Rymbai, who was forced last spring to relinquish his Chief Ministerial chair in favour of betenoire D D Lapang had decided since than not to contest on a Congress ticket for the upcoming 2008 Assembly elections.

''I have decided to put down my papers as a Congressman and as an MLA by this month,'' the veteran Congress leader told UNI here.

Mr Rymbai, who won five Assembly elections on the Congress ticket from Jirang constituency, Ri-Bhoi district had expressed his displeasure after D D Lapang toppled his nine-month-old government.

Mr Rymbai was sworn-in as Meghalaya's Chief Minister on June 15 in 2006 after a Congress MLAs ousted Mr Lapang as the Chief Minister.

Meanwhile, the UDP, the main ally of Congress-led Meghalaya Democratic Alliance government have decided to allot UDP ticket to Mr Rymbai to contest from Jirang.

''We have decided to allot UDP ticket to Mr Rymbai to contest the election,'' UDP spokesperson Bindo M Lanong said, adding that the party would formally announce Mr Rymbai as their candidate for the Jirang constituency.

However, the UDP too is facing infighting in Jirang constituency, following the party's decision to allot Rymbai the ticket. UNI RRK LL DB1847

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