SHILLONG, Sept 27: Following the declaration made by the arrested Garo National Liberation Army (GNLA) Chief Champion R Sangma to contest in the 2013 elections and support to the ruling Congress in Garo hills regions, the Governor of Meghalaya RS Mooshahary Thursday said that the chances for militant chief to contest are â€œskimpyâ€ as he is not even granted bail for his criminal activities.
â€œThe arrested chairman of the militant outfit cannot contest in the 2013 elections as the latter is not even granted bail for his criminal activities,â€ Mooshahary told reporters on the sideline of a seminar on mining here.
He further argued that â€œHow can it be possible for him (Champion Sangma) to contest the elections when he is not even on bail… With so many cases pending against him, he cannot say he has no criminal backgrounds.â€Â Â Â Â Â
The Governor however clarified, â€œUnless anyone is convicted, technically they can contest the elections…,â€ adding that the case of Champion is different.
â€œHe is a criminal and he is not even on bail. Will he be able to join politics with so many cases pending against him? The court has to decide,â€ Mooshahary stated.
Champion recently told reporters that he will be contesting in the Meghalaya General Elections 2013. On his interaction with the media, the GNLA chief even declared that he and the outfit are supporting the ruling Congress in Garo hills except in two constituencies adding that he has even directed his cadres not to create any problems during the ensuing elections.
The statement made by the GNLA chairman has created a lot of ripples in the state political arena, with different political parties suspecting a militant-political â€˜nexusâ€™.
On this, the Governor refused to give his comment stating that he is not in a position to say anything on this since he has nothing to do with political parties in the state.
However, expressing concern on the rising militant activities in the Garo Hills region, the former chief of the elite National Security Guards (NSG) stressed â€œWe have to do more to contain militancy.â€
Mentionably, Champion was arrested from the Indo-Bangladesh border on July 30 and is presently under judicial custody.