SHILLONG, Nov 12: Is the Indian National Congress (INC) heading for decimation in Meghalaya when the northeastern state goes to poll early next year? The spate of political developments over the past months is indicating that the Congress could be heading for trouble.
The series of exodus by established Congressmen from the party will no doubt dent its prospect because in all probability they are going to retain their seats but for a different party to which they have shifted their allegiance.
A congress functionary from the city has informed that they are putting up good candidates against the deserters in each of the constituencies but is skeptical at the same time how far they are going to pose a threat to the heavyweights that left the Congress in the last few months.
The functionary even acknowledged the fact that the stand of the chief minister, Dr. Mukul Sangma in few cases may be attributed to the exodus crisis that hit the party. The biggest blow, according to the functionary is that of Prestone Tynsong – who is claimed to maintain a dignified stand and never talks ill of the party. But his departure is seen as a blow to the Congress since he is not only a veteran Congress leader but is also one of the faces of the party in this part of the country.
Political analysts are of the opinion that a disaster has already hit Congress with the departure of these leaders and that is only going to benefit the party to which they have moved into.
NPP is expected, in all likelihood, to grab Garo Hills. The party is also making serious inroads in the Khasi and Jaintia Hills region of the state by gaining itself from the Congress exodus.
It is learnt that more “movements” are expected post the upcoming assembly session. The NPP is projected at the moment as favourite but in politics, as analyst says, nothing can be ruled out until the government is formed. At the backdrop of these political developments, the claims and assertions by the Congress to put up a good show has been ridiculed by the public who are keeping a close tab.
Meanwhile, there is growing expectation especially from the people of Garo Hills about their long time demand for Garoland. There is an air of hope among the people there that if NPP can come to power along with BJP – which is in power at the centre – then there may well be a chance to fulfill this dream of a separate state for the Garo people.
Questions are being raised for the step motherly treatment towards this part (Garo Hills) of the state by successive Congress and other governments, which has led to this region being dubbed as “disturbed”. What is more annoying is that the Garo Hills, despite its rich resources and potentialities with several chief ministers from the region, could not figure out well in this part of the country.
Similar sentiments are also seen among the Jaintia people – who too feel being deprived by the state government at Shillong. It is only Khasi Hills that has gained attention, so far, at the cost of Garo and Jaintia Hills is the opinion of many. This gross negligence by Congress is now being utilized by its rivals here by way of information on how the indigenous people aren’t protected by the Congress government that there comes a time now when they are turning minority in the face of an advancing foreign religion and culture.