Ending a long tussle with the opposition Congress, two of the five suspended Congress MLAs on Monday resigned as members of the 11th Meghalaya Legislative Assembly. With this the strength of the 60-member State Assembly now reduces to 55 members. The oldest political party which emerged as single largest in 2018, now has no legislators left under its fold.
The two legislators – Ampareen Lyngdoh (East Shillong) and Mohendro Rapsang (West Shillong) met the Assembly’s Commissioner & Secretary Andrew Simons and handed over their respective resignation letter to him at the Assembly Secretariat, Khyndai Lad here.
Speaking to reporters, Ampareen said, “After due diligence and extensive consultatives, Rapsang and I have decided to resign as MLAs.”
Stating that the Congress has shown them the door, she said, “They (Congress) have dismissed us and our opinions about our roles as stakeholders of this great democracy of this country, they have refused to consult with us, they have refused to partner with us.
We have been this way since Febraury this year and with much pain in our hearts, we have decided that we will walk out of the Congress main gate, main door officially without fear, without reservation and we are now going to enter a new political forum, we are joining the National People’s People.”
Ampareen said there may be some amount of disagreement among people from outside their respective constituencies.
“However, it is our duty to try and consolidate this political confusion that has been prevailing in our state for quite sometime now. Please continue to support us, support the NPP. You may have your own views we respect your view, we anticipate some reaction which is going to be negative as well but that’s the beauty of our democracy,” she added.
The former Congress leader said, “Why are we going to the NPP you may ask, we are confirmed and convinced in our two respective constituencies that if we have to leave a national party like the Indian National Congress, we should consolidate on a national party that is of the state itself which is the NPP.”
She said, “By our exit from the Congress, we look forward to partner with several leaders across the state and convinced them let Meghalaya be one, one Meghalaya in the interest of the people post 2023 elections.”
The senior legislator said that they have also seen several coalition governments and are convinced that “fragmentation of our support in the state may not be good in the long run for the people of the state.”
“Yes, NPP has some negatives but in this democracy of this country, you tell me is there any other parties which does not have any negatives. Individually as a candidate I also have some negatives surely, Rapsang also have some negatives surely but decide we must and we have decided,” she said.
Ampareen said if there is an incumbent factor for the MDA, it should be equally shared by all political partners in that coalition.
“Everybody has to take responsibility for all the confusions that arose.
So I disagree with you in you saying that NPP should take the sins of all the errors of the last five years. I think all political parties have partnered together, let them take equal responsibility for that mess,” she said.
Thanking all political parties who have extended their invites for joining their respective parties, Ampareen said, “The reason for zeroing down on the NPP is that it is a state own regional but national party and there seems to be minimum infighting in the NPP. This infighting was quite apparent in several other fronts. We were worried of again going into a political party where infighting would be the cause of its own downfall.”
Rapsang said that the people of his constituency have no regret of him leaving the Congress to join the NPP.
“I won the 2018 elections from the Congress and as you have seen there has been a lot of turmoil within the party. Therefore, we have decided to come out from the Congress to join the NPP,” he said.
He assured to continue to serve the people of his constituency in particular and the state in general.