SHILLONG, July 08: Former Governor of Meghalaya, Mundakkal Mathew Jacob, who passed away in his home state in Kerala on Sunday at the age of 90, was fondly remembered here in the state, as soon as the news of his demise spread.
City based socio-cultural organization, Sree Narayana Guru Cultural Centre (SNGCC), Shillong in a meeting on Sunday condoled the demise of the former Governor. The members, while recalling his days here being the longest serving Governor of the state, said that he maintained a cordial relationship with one and all irrespective of their subscriptions.
“He united all and was always open to the cause of the people. He remained dedicated to his work till his very end. His long stint as the Governor of Meghalaya got him much popularity in the hill state,” said the President of SNGCC, MK Mohanan, who was very close to him, and has even met him on more than one occasion at his residence in Kerala. He said that he was an amiable person and was open to all, whose warmth personality made him very popular in this part of the country. Recalling those days, he said that he had the opportunity to share and discuss with Jacob on many issues and even received guidance from him.
Jacob was the Governor of Meghalaya for twelve long years, from 19 June 1995 to 11 April 2007, during which he had to manage the dissidence followed by leadership change in the then Congress government in the state, very often. He had the distinction of swearing in twelve chief ministers during his that many years stay here. Seeing the dissidence in the government and congressmen running regularly to him, he once commented, “In Meghalaya, every MLA wants to become a minister and every minister, chief minister.”
One of his keen interests was in the traditional forms of local democracy seen in the tribal northeastern region of the country, which was amply witnessed during his tenure in Meghalaya, where he advocated that the grassroots democracy in tribal areas should be strengthened with the merging of modernity.