5 events which were significant in the political landscape in Meghalaya

5 events which were significant in the political landscape in Meghalaya

SHILLONG: In the year 2016, Meghalaya was marred with several political developments from cabinet reshuffle, by-polls to shift of party allegiance by politicians and the active participation of the once silent saffron party in Meghalaya political arena.

Here are 5 events which have altered the political landscape in Meghalaya in 2016

## Fallout of political parties: Parties' rivalries are nothing new in Meghalaya but a common rivalry towards a single largest party is something which has caught the attention of the public. Yes, the congress party has become a common target for the regional parties in the state, some of whom have even forged an alliance with the BJP and NPP, even as the allies intend to overthrow the congress party in the upcoming 2018 assembly elections. But murmurs of differences between NPP and BJP especially in the formation of the GHADC are something which should be keenly watched in the coming year.

NPP Tsunami buries Mukul: The humiliating defeat of the congress party and the overwhelming victory of the NPP during the Tura by-polls to the Lok Sabha seat. Of course, late Purno Sangma's son and former Meghalaya finance Minister Conrad Sangma crushed chief minister Mukul Sangma's wife and Mahendraganj MLA, Dikkanchi D Shira to retain the Tura seat and instill a sense of hope for the party's victory in the 2018 assembly elections.

## Saga of conflicts within the congress continues: like Internal bickering within the congress party is nothing new in the state. This year, like the previous years, witnessed a constant infighting within the party. The relentless effort of the congress rebels to overthrow chief minister and the subsequent axing of two congress leaders from the cabinet struck a surprising chord amongst the political parties in the state. The role of Himanta Biswa Sarma and his closeness to leaders from UDP and certain leaders within congress continued to haunt the AICC.

## Down goes the dual post holders: The passage of the Prevention of Disqualification (Members of Legislative Assembly of Meghalaya) (Amendment) Act, 2015 was another major political development in the state as the same had led to the resignation of 7 dual posts' holders in the Meghalaya legislative assembly and the KHADC/JHADC. What followed next is obviously, a 'clash of interests' between the leaders of the two constitutional governing bodies – state government and the district council.

## Fist of Fury: The only MLA/MDC who refused to relinquish his post as the MDC was KHADC CM PN Syiem. His adamant attitude did not go well with the congress party. The battle later took a personal turn as Syiem hit back at Mukul, the same of which led to the former's suspension from the party. The fallout of the rift costs congress 4 of its MDCs who later joined the saffron brigade. The office of Governor also got involved in this saga and thereby gave their personal differences a different colour.

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