Meghalaya: Four sitting Congress MLAs set to join BJP
With the Meghalaya Assembly elections just months away, four sitting Congress MLAs will on Tuesday join the BJP, reported news agency ANI. Congress is facing an exodus legislators ahead of the elections in the northeastern state, which has emerged as a major problem for incumbent Chief Minister Mukul Sangma.
On Friday, eight MLAs in Meghalaya, including five of the ruling Congress, resigned from the state assembly to join NDA ally National People's Party (NPP). On Monday, senior Meghalaya Congress MLA AL Hek announced that he would part ways with the party and join the BJP.
Hek joining the BJP will be his "home-coming" as he had left the BJP and joined the Congress in 2009. He was a state minister until last year.
Bogged by the flight of the MLAs in the poll-bound state, Congress president Rahul Gandhi had, on Saturday last, appointed Celestine Lyngdoh as the new chief of the party's Meghalaya unit, replacing DD Lapang, who was made an adviser to the state unit.
The term of the present House is scheduled to come to an end on March 6, 2018, and this exodus is making it more and more clear that non-Congress forces are gaining ground in Meghalaya, ahead of the elections.
The five Congress legislators had earlier rebelled against Chief Minister Mukul Sangma and the party leadership. Four of the five Congress MLAs were part of the state cabinet and were sacked by the chief minister on the grounds of "incompetence".