TURA, Nov 30: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has lambasted the Chief Minister, Dr. Mukul Sangma, after the party was denied permission to hold a rally at Betasing under Ampati constituency in South West Garo Hills (SWGH) district.
The proposed Karyakarta Sammelan for the party’s booth level workers on Thursday afternoon was cancelled at the last minute after the SWGH administration denied the party permission citing late submission of its application as a reason. Angry party workers refused to leave the venue for hours with senior leaders accusing the CM of orchestrating the whole issue.
The BJP’s candidate for Ampati, Bakul Hajong was to address the gathering after confirmation of being the candidate to take on the CM.
“We had sought permission as early as 10:30 am this (Thursday) morning for a meeting that was supposed to take place at 1:30 pm. The Sammelan was organized by the Ampatigre Youth Welfare Organization to welcome my candidature. We were denied permission to do so,” said Bakul Hajong.
“This was political interference by the CM in his constituency,” alleged the BJP’s state Kisan Morcha president, KC Boro while adding that the CM had even sent a magistrate to ensure the meeting did not begin.
The district administration however denied the allegations adding that the denial of permission was only due to late submission of the meeting application. He further dismissed the BJP contention that the application was submitted at 10:30 adding that he only got the same at 11:45.
“It was impossible to get things organized at such short notice and the matter was forwarded to the SP for his take on security. Procedures have to be followed when seeking permission for public meetings. Permission was sought at the last hour and thus could not be granted until a report from the SP was received,” said the Deputy Commissioner (DC) of SWGH, CVD Diengdoh.
The DC added that final examinations were also on in a school close to the venue. He had further asked the BJP to reschedule the meeting which the party members allegedly agreed to.
SWGH SP, Bobby W Momin also stated that it was not possible to allow the meeting at the last minute as security had to be arranged for the rally.
The cancelled rally saw more than 2000 party workers come to the venue and refusing to leave. It was only after intervention from senior leaders including Hajong and KC Boro that the crowd dispersed on the assurance that a similar rally would be organized as the same venue in the coming days.
“This anger will translate into votes in the coming days as everyone is aware that there was a political hand behind the denial of permission,” added Ampati BJP candidate, Hajong.