SHILLONG, Dec 23: Seeking to maintain stability in the Khasi Hills Autonomous District Council in the wake of the recently concluded by elections to six seats in the Council, the Hill State People’s Democratic Party (HSPDP) has extended its support to the Progressive Democratic Front (PDF) led Executive Committee (EC) in the Council.
In the midst of reports of an alleged aggressive campaign on the part of the Congress party to dislodge the PDF from the Council which is led by the Chief Executive Member (CEM), PN Syiem who was recently suspended from the Congress party, this move made by the HSPDP has ensured that the PDF has the requisite numbers to hold on to the reins of power in the Council.
With the support of the 4 HSPDP MDCs and with the shuffling of numbers in the wake of the recently concluded by elections, the PDF currently has 22 members in a house of 30, more than enough to ensure that it continues to stay in power.
As of now, the PDF comprises 5 MDCs from United Democratic Party (UDP), 4 from the HSPDP, 2 from the Khun Hynniewtrep National Awakening Movement (KHNAM), 1 from the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and 9 Independent MDCs.
The letter of support submitted by the four HSPDP MDCs – Teilinia Thangkhiew, Pyniaid Sing Syiem, Samlin Malngiang and BB Warjri was submitted to the KHADC CEM, PN Syiem who interestingly took credit for ‘uniting’ the regional political parties which are more often than not, divided along ideological lines.
“After consultation with our party, we pledge our support to the PDF in KHADC. The reason for our support is to provide stability to the current EC and urge upon you to continue to take up issues pertaining to our customs and traditions for the welfare of our indigenous populace,” they stated in the letter.
Syiem meanwhile has accepted this support and in this regard, he said, “We welcome and accept the letter of support of the HSPDP MDCs with the objective of ensuring the stability of the present EC.”
“I am glad that the coalition partners of the PDF have a common issue and through stability we will continue to protect the interests of the indigenous community,” Syiem said.
Assuring that the EC would further take up the issues related to MUDA, traditional institutions, land rights and others, Syiem said, “Under my leadership, we will also carry along the common programmes of the regional parties.”
He also expressed the PDF’s appreciation of the issues taken up by the former CEMs Ardent Basaiawmoit of HSPDP and Adelbert Nongrum of KHNAM during the EC led by ARPA.
Denying that the sudden change of mind of the HSPDP was to ensure stability of its chief Basaiawmoit, Syiem however said, “We applaud the wise move of the HSPDP to thwart the attempt of the Congress to destabilize the present EC.”
Meanwhile, the opposition bench in the KHADC is now left with only 6 Congress MDCs, while the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) which has only 1 newly elected representative by way of Ricky Shullai is yet to decide on its allegiance in the Council.