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Sonia summons M’laya Cong leader to resolve leadership crisis
Correspondent Shillong/New Delhi, May 6:
Published on 6 May. 2011 11:02 PM IST
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The Congress leadership has summoned Meghalaya Pradesh Congress Committee (MPCC) chief Friday Lyngdoh to resolve the internal bickering among legislators over the demand to remove Mukul Sangma as chief minister, a party official said Friday.
At least 18 of the 28 Congress legislators in the 60-member state assembly are believed to have projected D.D. Lapang as a possible successor to Sangma.
“The party high command (Congress President Sonia Gandhi) has asked me to come to Delhi to discuss the political development spill-over by the demands of our legislators to remove Dr Mukul,” Lyngdoh, the MPCC chief, told Nagaland Post.
Lyngdoh, who will be accompanied by his party Working President Debora C Marak, scheduled to meet Gandhi May 10 at her residence 10, Janpath in New Delhi.
Congress floor managers (AICC general secretary Dhani Ram Shandil, who is in charge of the party’s affairs in Meghalaya, and his deputy Sanjay Bapna) who were in Shillong last month failed to cut ice with the rebel Congress legislators.
Presently, the rebel Congress legislators, camping in New Delhi, are making all efforts to again bring in veteran Congress leader D.D. Lapang to replace Sangma.
“We have met a few of our senior party’s leaders here (New Delhi) and told them that we have lost faith under Sangma’s leadership,” a rebel Congress legislator said, but refused to be named.
“We are not at all happy with the style and functioning of (chief minister) Mukul. He takes unilateral decisions on several projects without consulting others,” the rebel legislator said.
Lapang, a veteran Congress legislator, resigned as chief minister April 20 last year after 21 of the 28 legislators proposed Sangma’s name.
Though, the AICC envoys admitted dissidence within the Congress Legislature Party in Meghalaya, Ruling out any change of guard in the state, Shandil however made it clear saying that ‘change can be effected only if the chief minister has committed some mistake.”
“In a democratic set-up, differences among party members are always there. We need to sort out these differences in an appropriate forum,” he asserted.
Sangma, who is heading four-party government, had exuded confidence that he would complete his term.
“I am aware of the political moves but they will not dilute the very essence of our guiding principles to serve the public and would continue (to be the chief minister) till 2013,” Sangma had said.
The Congress enjoys the support of UDP (9 members), HSPDP (2), KHNAM (1) and four independent members. The Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), the main opposition in the state, has 15 members. Meghalaya has seen nine governments with varied combinations, resulting in eight chief ministers between 1998 and 2009. Since Meghalaya attained statehood in 1972, only two chief ministers have completed their five-year terms.

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