GNLA to support Congress in 2013 polls: Champion

Rebel group chief keen to contest on Congress ticket

By Our Reporter

 SHILLONG: Garo National Liberation Army (GNLA) chief Champion Sangma on Thursday made a startling remark that the militant outfit would support Congress in the upcoming 2013 Assembly elections in Meghalaya.

Speaking to media persons after being produced in the court on Thursday, Champion said, “We will support Congress in the upcoming elections. I have directed my cadres to support the Congress.”

Champion also expressed his desire to contest the upcoming polls on a Congress ticket.

He, however, added that the outfit would not support the Congress candidates in two constituencies, the names of which he did not disclose.

During his conversation with one of the local journalists, Champion expressed his intention to contest the elections for the cause of Garoland.

He also informed that he has made an appeal to his cadres not to create any problems during the elections next year.

Interestingly, Champion stated that he wanted his lawyer Sujit Dey to contest the upcoming State polls from a general seat.

Reacting to a query on the possibility of GNLA giving up arms, Champion said, “Members of the outfit would come for talks once I am elected to the State Assembly.”

When asked about the possibility of pro-talks with the Government, he revealed that the cadres were willing to sit for talks with the Government but he was yet to take a stand.

Meanwhile, Champion’s legal counsel, Sujit Dey, stated that the militant leader is eligible to contest elections since ‘hundreds of accused people across the country are now members of the Parliament and the state legislative assemblies’.

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