2019 general elections: BJP, regional parties at loggerheads in Meghalaya

Shillong: Differences have emerged in the ruling alliance in Meghalaya with the regional parties deciding to support a UDP candidate for the Shillong Lok Sabha constituency and the BJP wanting to put up its own.

The Meghalaya Democratic Alliance (MDA) consists of National People’s Party (NPP), United Democratic Party (UDP), People’s Democratic Front (PDF), Hills State People’s Democratic Party (HSDP), Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Independents.

After yesterday’s meeting – attended by NPP president and Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma and Speaker Donkupar Roy – the regional parties in the MDA announced that they would support the UDP general secretary Jemino Mawthoh for the Shillong LS seat.

“We have unanimously decided on a candidate as far as the Shillong seat is concerned. We are preparing on how to contest the elections and we are determined to win Shillong and Tura seats,” said Roy.

He said the MDA would also support the candidate to be put up by the NPP for Tura.

However, the BJP today said it would contest from Shillong and Tura Lok Sabha seats and not support the MDA candidate.

“We will go ahead and field our candidates for the two seats. As a national party, our focus is to field candidates. Our interests are for the nation,” BJP state president Shibun Lyngdoh said.

The NPP is yet to announce its candidate for the Tura, but party officials said Agatha Sangma, who is a former Union minister and sister of Conrad Sangma, is likely to be the candidate for the election to be held 11 April.