Eyeing to contest election to all the 60 seats in the upcoming Meghalaya Assembly polls- 2023, Meghalaya Pradesh Congress president Vincent Pala has informed that the Pradesh Election Committee of MPCC has cleared the list of candidates for 40 seats and the rest 20 seats will be announced later.


For the first time, the MPCC chief has thrown his hat into the electoral fray as Pala will be contesting from Sutnga-Saipung constituency.


The first list also featured the names of 10 former legislators and seven women candidates.


Addressing the media, Pala said that 26 names were cleared from Khasi and Jaintia Hills, 14 names were cleared in Garo Hills.


“We will again sit for a meeting after a week to decide on the remaining 20 seats which include 10 in Khasi-Jaintia Hills and 10 in Garo Hills,” the MPCC president said.


“We only cleared the list but the names will be approved and announced from Delhi,” the Shillong MP added.


Stating that 20% of the candidates are women, Pala said, “I am proud to inform that there are 8 women candidates and some of them are highly qualified and hard working. None of the political parties will have so many ladies (in their respective lists).”


Portraying Congress as an alternate government, Pala said that the Congress is putting up fresh faces in the upcoming elections as 10 candidates were former MLAs.


The other former legislators include: Dr Celestine Lyngdoh (Umsning), J Antonius Lyngdoh (North Shillong), Deborah Marak (Williamnagar), Billykid A Sangma (North Tura), Edmund S Sangma (Rangsakona), Sayeedullah Nongrum (Mahendraganj), Rophul S Marak (Rongara-Siju) and Brigady Napak Marak (Bajengdoba).


Ronnie V Lyngdoh (Mylliem) and Pynshngainlang N Syiem (Pynthorumkhrah) who are presently sitting MDCs are also ex MLAs.


Apart from them, Batskhem Ryntathiang (Mairang), Gabriel Wahlang (Nongstoin), Charles Marngar (Mawhati), Carnes Sohshang (Mawkyrwat) are all sitting MDCs.


The women candidates include: Deborah Marak (Williamnagar), Rona Khymdei (Nongpoh), Venetia Pearl Mawlong (South Shillong), Dr Banidashisha Kharkongor (Nongthymmai), Lakyntiew Sohkhlet (Sohra), Pynhunlang Nongrum (Mawkynrew), Victorealness Syiemlieh (Ranikor) and Uttora G Sangma (Ampati).


Against its former leader Dr. Mukul M Sangma who deserted the party and joined All India Trinamool Congress in 2021, the Congress cleared the name of former DSP turned chairman of the disbanded Garo terrorist outfit – Garo National Liberation Army (GNLA), Champion R Sangma from Songsak constituency.


The other candidates whose name featured in the lists are Emlang Laloo (Nartiang), Nehemayah Tyngkan (Mowkaiaw), Adrian Lambert Chyne Mylliem (Jirang), Marbud Dkhar (Mawlai), Manuel Badwar (East Shillong), Sardonik Nongkhlaw (Nongkrem), S Osborne Kharjana (Sohiong), Dannyson Kurbah (Mawphlang), Gopal Stone Hynniewta (Mawsynram), Nehru Suting (Pynursla), Goldenstar Nonglong (Rambrai-Jyrngam), Timjim K Momin (Mendipathar), Frederick Sangma (Raksamgre), Dr Kapin Ch Boro (Tikrikilla), Augustine D Marak (Dadenggre), Roger Benny A Sangma (Dalu), Karak R Sangma (Chokpot).


With the state of Meghalaya gearing up for the 2023 Meghalaya Assembly elections, this is the first time that the opposition Congress adopted this system.


However, the party which in 2018, under the leadership of former Chief Minister Dr Mukul Sangma, Congress emerged as single largest party,  gradually collapsed following the appointment of Lok Sabha Member from Shillong parliamentary constituency Vincent H Pala as the Meghalaya Pradesh Congress Committee president, the  oldest political party shattered like a ‘House of Card’.



By Editor