Ao asks CM not to speak disparagingly of BJP

SHILLONG, Feb 22: Breaking his silence on the ongoing internal bickering in the state BJP and Chief Minister Conrad Sangma’s dig at State BJP president Ernest Mawrie, the national vice president and incharge of BJP Dr M. Chuba Ao has said that the disparaging remarks of Conrad is not expected, particularly as the saffron party is a coalition partner.
Speaking to The Shillong Times by phone on Monday, Dr Ao fielded some questions on controversies in the party, the latest being allegations by the BJP South Shillong MLA, Sanbor Shullai that the State BJP president was elected by manipulation, he said that during his first visit to the state he had told the party leaders not to rush to the media but to sort things out internally.
When told that Mawrie was raising issues of corruption in the Garo Hills Autonomous District Council for which he had filed RTI queries and was provided with answers that indicted the NPP of diversion of funds and non-payment of salaries to nearly 1,700 employees, Dr Ao said that the State BJP and the MLAs should have discussed this with Chief Minister, Conrad Sangma and the MDA Government before rushing to the media.
“These differences of opinion are inevitable since every party has its own ideology but in a coalition we are expected to resolve differences internally. In fact, the State BJP should spend more time highlighting the achievements of Prime Minister Modi and the NDA Government. Modi has launched more than 200 different schemes for the benefit of the people of this country. People may not agree with the BJP but Modi is Prime Minister of the whole country,” Dr Ao said.
Referring to the souring of relationships between the BJP and the NPP-led MDA government and the challenge put forward by Conrad Sangma that BJP can leave the coalition if they are not happy, Dr Ao said, “Conrad Sangma is a dynamic, young leader with a bright future. We do not expect him to speak so disparagingly of the BJP which is part of the coalition.”
Dr Ao said that the BJP is concerned about corruption and believes in good governance and that the differences that are surfacing need to be addressed within and among the coalition partners.
“I am coming to Meghalaya very soon and will see that the various issues and challenges faced by the Party are resolved,” Dr Ao, who is currently in Delhi for a meeting said.

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