Meghalaya cabinet cannot take policy decision: Naik

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Shillong, Jan 16 (UNI) With the election model code of conduct coming into force, the Cabinet would not be able to take any policy decision regarding striking a deal with the controversial power projects in Meghalaya.

''There would be no problem in scrapping the deal but no policy decision can be taken in striking a deal following the election model code of conduct coming into effect from January 14,'' Chief Electoral Officer P Naik told reporters today.

Chief Minister D D Lapang has called for a cabinet meeting on January 18 to review the earlier decision to handover the state power projects to private companies in the wake of protest against the ''shady deal'' from several organisations and political parties.

Sources said the state government is contemplating to consult lawyers to ensure that its decisions do not violate the election model of conduct. Elections are due in Meghalaya on March 3.

Meanwhile, after picketing for two days in Garo Hills opposing the power deal, the Federation of Achik Freedom (FAF) has suspended its agitation pending the Cabinet decisions on Friday next. Other organisations like the Khasi Students' Union and the Federation of Khasi Jaintia and Garo People (FKJGP) have also taken similar decision.

Today another organisation, the Synjuk Ki Rangbah Shnong, an umbrella organisation of traditional headmen in Shillong urged the Chief Minister to reverse its decision and cancel any Memorandum of Understandings or Memorandum of Agreements that have been entered into by the government regarding the controversial power projects.

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