Cong claims new government in Meghalaya, NCP says 'no'

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Shillong, Jul 26 (UNI) Even as the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) has ruled out fresh alliance with the Opposition Congress in Meghalaya, state Congress President OL Nongtdu today claimed that central leaders of the two national parties were negotiating for the formation of a new government.

'' Negotiations are on between Central leaders of Congress and NCP for the formation of a new government in Meghalaya and it's just a matter of time before that happens, '' Mr Nongtdu said.

However, NCP national General Secretary P A Sangma rebutted the Congress' claims and maintained that his party would remain in the Meghalaya Progressive Alliance (MPA) Government till completion of its full term.

'' I do not follow the directions of the central high command since I abide by the decision of the lower command, '' Mr Sangma, the architect of the MPA government said.

The Congress, which emerged as the single largest party, was short of just six seats to cross the majority threshold in the House.

In fact, the Congress required just three more legislators to tip the balance in their favour but failed to sway any, despite giving the rival Legislators to 'choose-n-pick' ministerial berth offer that time.

With 15 Legislators, the NCP was backing the United Democratic Party-led MPA government with the support of Hill State People's Democratic Party, Khun Hynniewtrep National Awakening Movement, BJP and three Independent MLAs.

Mr Sangma said even if there was a pre-poll alliance between the NCP and the Congress at the Centre and in states like Maharashtra and Karnataka, it would not apply to Meghalaya.

'' The dynamics of Meghalaya politics is entirely different from that of Maharastra and Karnataka, '' Mr Sangma said.

In fact, NCP chief Sharad Pawar, a minister in the Congress-led UPA Government, had said he would never interfere into the state affairs of the NCP in Meghalaya and leave the political affairs to Mr Sangma.

The State Congress chief, however, said Mr Sangma's instructing his MP daughter Agatha K Sangma to vote in favour of the UPA Government was one step towards the Congress and NCP working together in the state.

'' He (Sangma) may deny it, but negotiations are on for a possible alliance, '' he said.

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