Mukul Sangma tenders resignation as Meghalaya CM

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Shillong: In an interesting turn of events in the race for a tie-up to form the government in Meghalaya, Union Minister Kiren Rijiju along with Himanta Biswa Sarma bumped into outgoing Congress CM Mukul Sangma at the United Democratic Party (UDP) headquarters in Shillong.

"He (Mukul Sangma) came and met me seeking our support to form the government with a proposal of sharing power two and half years each", UDP chief Dr Donkupar Roy said.

Shortly after the meeting with governor Prasad, Assam minister Sarma said one of the two BJP legislators will be "a part of the government". "They want to fire from the shoulder of other political parties".

"We [the United Democratic Party] made a decision to form a non-Congress government, and we have decided that the government will be led by Conrad Sangma as the chief minister", Roy told ANI.

The Congress won 21 seats out the 59 that went to polls last month.

"We are hopeful that we will be able to form the government".

Asked if the BJP will be a part of the next government in coalition with the NPP and the other regional parties, Sharma said, "The people have given their mandate against the congress and it is only right for the NPP and the regional forces to have a post-poll alliance and form the government".

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That nearly all the regional parties had contested the elections on an anti-Congress plank may make it hard for the party to stitch up a coalition to reach the halfway mark of 30.

NPP chief Conrad Sangma, who was elected as the leader of the alliance, met Governor Ganga Prasad to stake the claim for formation of a Government.

A delegation of three Congress leaders - Kamal Nath, Ahmed Patel and CP Joshi - met the governor at 7 pm last night, they said. She won the assembly election from the South Tura seat.

Among Congress stalwarts who have lost are former chief minister Salseng C. Marak, defeated by former deputy chief minister and NPP candidate Timothy D. Shira at Resubelpara.

If the Congress fails to form a government in Meghalaya, it will be in power in just the one northeast state of Mizoram.

The BJP with a tally of 35 seats won the majority on its own, while its alliance partner the Indigenous Peoples Front of Tripura (IPFT) bagged eight seats, according to the Election Commission (EC) sources.